The choice of treatments in cosmetic dentistry is huge so here you’ll find a brief overview of the different treatments you can do to achieve the perfect smile. From veneers and bridges, to crowns and white fillings, a lot of cosmetic dentists are also equipped with computers that carry out smile analyses which look at the relationship between lips, gums and teeth.
What’s it for?: Yellow teeth. Losing the colour of your teeth is part of the ageing process. Teeth start to change colour from teenage years.
Genetics also play a part in white teeth. If your parents have yellow teeth, you are more likely to follow suit. Whitening is for people who suffer from teeth stained by food, drink – mainly red wine, coffee and tea – and tobacco – without harming their teeth.
There are three types of teeth whitening techniques to choose from:
• Pure laser technique: A quick fix way to whiten teeth. How it works: Laser beams – or the more updated light emitting wavelengths – provide an intense light which activate a whitening agent made from carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide pasted onto the enamel of the tooth. This chemical reaction lifts the stain out of the enamel, and is then washed away by the dentist. How long does it take?: About one-and-a-half hours. How long does it last?: Needs topping up once every three to six months.
• Kick start laser: How it works: A mould of the teeth is taken and a mouth guard made to exact specifications. The patient wears the mouthguard filled with a whitening gel made from carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide. Laser beams, or a light emitting wavelengths, activates the gel pasted onto the enamel of the tooth. How long does it take?: Two appointments, two weeks apart. How long does it last?: Three to six months.
• Home kit: How it works: The patient is fitted with a tailor-made mouth guard. Instead of a laser, the patient wears the mouthguard filled with whitening gel which is worn each night for around three weeks. This does not harm the teeth but slightly changes the composition of the dentine – the part of a tooth that is hard, contains calcium and lies underneath the enamel – making it appear whiter. How long does it take?: Two to three weeks. How long does it last?: Between three and six months.
What are they for?: This is a versatile technique used to correct crowding in the mouth, cover badly broken teeth, badly stained teeth, reshape teeth or to close up gaps.
How do they work: Veneers are used to increase the dimension of the tooth, thicken them, make them squarer or longer. Thin slices of porcelain called veneers are shaped and coloured to correspond to the existing teeth. The veneer is bonded onto the front surface of the tooth using a chemical bonding agent. A minimal amount of drilling is used to curve the contours of the veneers. How long does it take?: Two separate appointments. How long does it last?: At least 15 to 20 years if well looked after.
Find a cosmetic dentist near you in Braintree, Essex.