Cosmetic DentistAlexandria, VA
To restore your beautiful smile, a cosmetic dentist is the right person to see. This professional can help you improve your oral health. You should not have to go through life with aesthetic concerns with your teeth, such as misalignments, damaged teeth, or missing teeth. If these issues have affected your dental health, there are solutions.
Cosmetic dental problems can be a significant concern. You may have poor self-esteem because of these. Such challenges can even begin to affect your oral health. If these scenarios sound familiar, do not wait any longer to address them. Your dentist has the knowledge and experience to help.
Call our office today and schedule a time for an evaluation and consultation. You can get started on the road to reviving your smile and feeling good about your appearance.
Cosmetic conditions and what causes them
It is not uncommon for a person to have blemishes with their smile. These troubles can be evident at a young age. Some people struggle with them throughout life. A cosmetic dentist may help correct a variety of concerns. Some of these include:
- Broken, chipped, or cracked teeth
- Missing teeth, including multiple teeth or all of a person’s teeth
- Crooked or twisted teeth
- Abnormally large or small teeth
- Crowded teeth
- Discolored or stained teeth
A person can naturally have alignment problems, yellow teeth, or other challenges that affect their appearance. Poor oral hygiene is also a frequent cause. A lack of effective brushing and flossing can cause deterioration, leading to damage or loss. For other patients, accidents and injuries are the culprits.
How the dentist can help
Some people think of a dentist as someone who prevents and fixes cavities and gum disease. These are significant parts of what a dentist does. However, a cosmetic dentist can help with the aesthetics of a person’s teeth. This dentist has the knowledge and training to assess a person’s cosmetic needs. The dentist will decide which treatments are well-suited to restore teeth.
The dentist will evaluate the patient’s condition. This will include a series of X-rays and impressions. The dentist will determine which treatment will be the most effective and provide a good long-term solution. After performing the treatment, the dentist will regularly follow up with the patient.
The cosmetic dentist may recommend dental implants as a permanent tooth replacement. This treatment provides a durable long-term answer, filling in the gaps in the mouth. Implants consist of three parts: a titanium post that acts as the tooth’s root, a smaller piece called an abutment, and a natural-looking crown. The process of getting implants can be long and requires a lengthy recovery. However, implants can last up to 20 years or more and allow the person to eat most foods again.
After deciding that implants make the most sense, the dentist will ensure that the patient has good bone growth in the jaw. After numbing the area, the dentist makes an incision in the person’s gums. Then, the dentist drives the screw-like posts deep into the jawbone. The dentist stitches the incision wound. At this point, the patient will undergo a few months of recovery as the gums heal and the post and bone fuse.
The next step involves the placement of the abutment, which attaches to the post. Once this occurs, the patient takes a few more months to heal. The dentist then has the patient come back to get the crowns. The crown attaches to the abutment and looks like a real tooth in size, shape, and color.
Dental veneers can correct tooth damage as well as discoloration and crooked teeth. A cosmetic dentist may recommend these for a single tooth or when multiple teeth have these issues. Veneers are thin porcelain shells that attach to the front of a tooth. The dentist can make the veneer to be any desired color shade. Veneers can last up to 10 years or more, depending on how well the patient cares for them.
The dentist will first prepare the affected tooth by reshaping it so that the veneer fits properly. Then, the dentist will etch the tooth and remove some enamel to make it rough. The dentist uses dental cement to bond the veneer to the tooth, first ensuring that it fits well and blends in with the surrounding teeth. Veneers look natural and are difficult to tell apart from actual teeth.
Crowns are similar to veneers. A cosmetic dentist may suggest this treatment when a person has broken a tooth or if there is severe discoloration on one tooth or a few teeth. Unlike veneers, however, the crown will cover the entire tooth. The crown will stabilize weak teeth and protect further damage from occurring to a tooth. It is strong enough to bite into most foods.
Some offices can make the crown in a single day while the patient is in the office. Others take a few weeks, requiring the patient to have a temporary crown first. The dentist will take X-rays and make impressions of the teeth first. Then, the dentist will reshape the affected tooth. Once the crown is ready, the dentist places it over the tooth, checking the bite and the patient’s comfort with it. It bonds to the tooth with dental cement.
For crooked teeth, Invisalign® may make the most sense. Unlike traditional metal braces, which stand out, this is a discreet treatment that is practically invisible. Invisalign are clear plastic trays that comfortably fit over the teeth like a mouthguard. The trays put constant pressure on the teeth, forcing them to move into the right locations.
These aligners are removable and stay in the mouth for 21 to 22 hours a day. The patient should remove them while eating and to clean them. The cosmetic dentist will provide a new set every few weeks as the teeth shift. The treatment length is usually shorter than braces, sometimes as little as six months.
Visit your cosmetic dentist today
Stop putting off a visit to the cosmetic dentist. There are effective ways to overcome aesthetic problems with your smile. For tooth damage, discoloration, missing teeth, or crooked teeth, these treatments can be right for you. Make an appointment with the dentist today.
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