Cosmetic Dental Care Birmingham, AL
Patients can receive cosmetic dental care to improve the appearance of their smiles. Unlike traditional dental care that helps patients maintain or improve oral health, cosmetic dental care aims to restore or improve the look of teeth, gums, and overall smile. Cosmetic dentists have treatments to whiten discolored teeth, reshape gums, replace missing teeth, and enhance the mouth’s overall appearance.
Cosmetic dental care is available at Inverness Smiles: John Aiken, DMD in Birmingham and the surrounding area to help give you a smile that you have always wanted. These treatments can boost your confidence and help you love your smile. Call us at (205) 282-8261 to schedule an appointment and find out which treatment is the best for you.
Understanding What Cosmetic Dental Care Is
Cosmetic dental care provides elective or desired treatments and services to improve a patient’s smile. People may want cosmetic dental care for various reasons, from color correction to replacing missing teeth. According to the American Dental Association, teeth discoloration is one of the most common cosmetic complaints, with 90% of patients wishing their teeth were whiter. Cosmetic dentistry can also solve issues like gums covering too much of the teeth surface or misshaped teeth.
Some cosmetic dentistry forms have been around since ancient times, but modern technology has led to great improvements in the last few decades. The materials used in treatments today are much more durable and natural-looking. While cosmetic dental care’s primary aim is to improve appearance, treatments can also provide restorative benefits. An example of this is dental fillings, which are considered restorative and cosmetic to a certain extent. Patients can opt to use porcelain or composite filling material to match their teeth color and maintain their natural appearance.
“Cosmetic dental care provides elective or desired treatments and services to improve a patient’s smile.”
Cosmetic Dental Care Options
Any type of dental treatment used to improve the teeth’s appearance qualifies as cosmetic dentistry. Dentists often use a combination of cosmetic procedures to help patients achieve their desired results. Some of the different types of cosmetic dentistry treatments are:
- Dental implants: This option allows dentists to replace missing teeth by anchoring artificial teeth to the natural root. Not only does this enhance cosmetic appearance, but it also improves the functionality of the mouth. Some similar options include bridges and dentures.
- Gum recontouring: Many people have gums that are either receded or overextended. Gum recontouring allows dentists to restructure gums, so they anchor teeth properly without being overly noticeable. This treatment improves the appearance of the smile by properly rationing the gums and teeth.
- Inlays and onlays: Inlays are restorative devices that fit inside cracked teeth to improve their appearance and make them stronger. Onlays cover the top of the tooth and offer the same benefits. These options treat cracked or chipped teeth located at the back of the mouth.
- Teeth whitening: While there are several procedures available for whitening teeth, the Oral Health Foundation states that professional bleaching is the most common treatment. Dentists use bleaching agents to remove stains caused by foods and beverages, medications, tobacco use, and aging. While this process may not fully restore teeth to their original shade, it can make them several shades lighter.
“Any type of dental treatment used to improve the teeth’s appearance qualifies as cosmetic dentistry.”
Choosing the Right Treatment and Cosmetic Dentist
Patients should carefully research and consider their treatment options. It is also essential to use careful consideration when looking for a qualified cosmetic dentist. Some criteria to consider choosing a cosmetic dentist are how long the dentist has been practicing, how extensive the practice is, what dental technologies they use, and previous patient results.
The initial consultation is important for patients to learn more about the practice and express their needs. This appointment is also an opportunity for the cosmetic dentist to advise which treatment will be the most beneficial and set up realist treatment expectations. The cosmetic dentist will gather information using X-rays and teeth impressions and review the patient’s teeth shape, size, and color. This information will help the cosmetic dentist create a custom treatment plan for the patient.
“Patients should carefully research and consider their treatment options.”
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Home Care Routines
Home care and maintenance differs from treatment to treatment. For most cosmetic treatments, dental care and oral hygiene regimens are the same: brush twice daily and floss at least once a day along with visiting the dentist for routine checkups. However, some cosmetic treatments require more individualized care.
For dental implants, brushing and flossing twice daily is crucial. Using a soft toothbrush and low-abrasive toothpaste, gently brush under, in, and around the implant to clean hard-to-reach areas. We also recommend using an unwaxed tape for flossing or implant-specific floss along with an oral irrigator.
For gum contouring and teeth whitening treatments, we advise patients to rest and avoid rigorous activity including biting and chewing. The gums and teeth require healing, which may take up to a week. During this time, patients should avoid spicy, sticky, and acidic foods and beverages. They should also continue to brush teeth two to three times daily and floss at least once a day.
“For most cosmetic treatments, dental care and oral hygiene regimens are the same: brush twice daily and floss at least once a day along with visiting the dentist for routine checkups.”
Questions Answered on This Page
People Also Ask
Dental Care Routines
For all cosmetic treatments, patients are advised on dental care routines for their individualized treatment plans. This may include home care and maintenance, dental care practices, and other specific instructions related to their specific treatment. In most cases, we recommend patients exercise the same care guidelines set by dental professionals.
A cosmetic dentist will likely recommend their patients brush twice daily, once in the morning and once before bed. We advise that patients undergoing cosmetic treatments brush their teeth after every meal to ensure their teeth and gums remain clean and healthy. This also helps with healing and prevents tooth decay and tooth loss. We also recommend patients floss and rinse at least once a day to remove tiny food particles and debris. Lastly, patient follow-ups are critical as they ensure treatment and recovery are going as planned, and allow providers to make alterations or offer suggestions as needed.
“We advise that patients undergoing cosmetic treatments brush their teeth after every meal to ensure their teeth and gums remain clean and healthy.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Is cosmetic dental care comfortable?
A. Most patients don’t experience discomfort during cosmetic dental procedures. Patients with dentures or implants may be slightly sore while adjusting to the devices. Patients can manage any discomfort with pain relief medication.
Q. Who is a good candidate for cosmetic dentistry?
A. Anyone unhappy with the appearance of their smile can benefit from cosmetic dentistry. Cosmetic dental treatment is a solution for patients who have missing teeth due to decay, disease, or trauma. It is also helpful for people with discolored teeth.
Q. What should patients expect from a cosmetic dentist?
A. A cosmetic dentist can drastically alter the appearance of a patient’s smile to enhance it. Depending upon the patient’s individual needs and desires, the dentist may use one or a combination of cosmetic procedures to restore teeth. However, it may take multiple appointments to achieve the desired results, so patients should not expect to see them immediately. Dentists may also have a different opinion on treating the issue, so patients should be open-minded when consulting with a cosmetic dental professional.
Q. How should patients choose a cosmetic dentist?
A. Patients should feel comfortable trusting their cosmetic dentist to perform the necessary procedures safely and efficiently. Before selecting a practitioner, patients should make sure the cosmetic dentist has experience with their desired treatment. Patients should also do their research carefully to ensure they choose the right cosmetic dentist and treatment for their particular needs.
Q. What types of cosmetic dentistry are available?
A. Different patients benefit from various types of cosmetic dental care. Those concerned with the appearance of their gums may opt for gum reshaping or contouring. People with stained teeth may want to get their teeth whitened. Dentures, bridges, or implants may be the recommended solution for patients with missing teeth. Some patients may even need to combine procedures to achieve their desired results.
- An allograft is a graft of tissue from a donor within the same species as the patient that is not a genetic relative.
- Cap Splint
- A cap splint is a plastic or metallic device that professionals may use to treat mandible or maxillary fractures and cover crowns of teeth.
- Crown Lengthening
- Crown lengthening is a surgical procedure that increases the extent of a tooth structure for restorative or esthetic purposes.
- Dentin Hypersensitivity
- Dentin hypersensitivity is when the enamel wears down on the tooth enough that the dentin faces exposure and will cause great levels of pain when a person applies pressure to the tooth or drinks hot/cold beverages.
Call Us Today
Having a beautiful smile is a confidence booster. Learn about how you can enhance your smile by speaking to our team at Inverness Smiles: John Aiken, DMD. Call us today at 205-282-8261 to schedule an appointment and discuss the best treatment plan to meet your individual needs.
Helpful Related Links
- American Dental Association (ADA). Glossary of Dental Clinical Terms. 2022
- American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry® (AACD). Home Page. 2022
- WebMD. WebMD’s Oral Care Guide. 2022
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