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Cosmetic Dentistry 101

by on May 12, 2016 | Posted in Blog

Throughout the years, numerous studies have revealed that an individual’s smile is considered to be his or her most attractive feature. So what happens if you’re not happy with the way your smile looks? Those who are dissatisfied with their teeth and gums are prone to smiling less as the result of feelings of insecurity. Ultimately, this can lead to problems with self-esteem and personal relationships, as well as a reduced quality of life.

The good news is that there’s absolutely no reason why you should have to feel down and out about your smile. Whether time, genetics, accidents, or other causes have contributed to your oral woes, there is a solution: cosmetic dentistry. This post will highlight some of the most common cosmetic dental procedures that are done to enhance natural beauty and create perfect smiles.

Tooth Whitening

Tooth whitening or bleaching is, by far, one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures performed today. Throughout the years, your teeth may have become stained or discolored. Different whitening options are available to restore your teeth back to their natural beauty quickly, painlessly, and affordably. Make sure to discuss all of your options with a trusted dentist before moving forward with the process.

Bonding

Those with chipped, broken, or cracked teeth may feel self-conscious about their smiles. Bonding works to improve the appearance of these teeth when tooth-colored materials are applied to the surface of the tooth.

Veneers

Veneers are another great option for people who are unhappy with one or more of their teeth due to staining, chips, crookedness, or irregular shaping. These custom-made shells are designed to match your other teeth and cover up problem areas.

Crowns

A crown works to add strength and support to a weak tooth and/or to improve a tooth’s appearance by acting as a cover. Crowns may be made from gold or alloys, and porcelain options are also available to better match natural tooth color.

Braces

Those with crooked teeth, overcrowding, or poor dental alignment might consider braces. Individuals who are concerned with the appearance of braces should talk to their dentist about Invisalign and similar options.

Dental Implants

When one or more of your teeth are missing, you may be a good candidate for dental implants. Implants are used as a means of replacing missing teeth with units that blend perfectly with other teeth and restore a smile to perfection. Before moving forward with dental implants, your dentist will need to evaluate your dental history to ensure that your oral health is up to snuff.

Bridges

Fixed and removable bridges are available for individuals with missing teeth. The bridge is crafted from materials including gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination thereof. While a fixed bridge is attached directly to the jaw and must be removed by a dental professional, removable bridges can be taken out and cleaned at home. Your dentist will evaluate your oral health in order to help you make the right decision for your smile.

Dentures

In some cases, most or all of an individual’s teeth may be missing, or may be severely damaged and in need of removal. In cases like these, a simple, effective, and affordable solution is to replace natural teeth with dentures. Dentures are custom-made to fit a patient’s mouth and will have the appearance of natural teeth with all of the functionality to chew and talk normally, and to smile beautifully.

Don’t let a less than perfect smile hold you back any longer. Contact Dr. Bruce McArthur, DDS about your options for cosmetic dentistry in order to find a solution that’s right for you. Give us a call today to start moving towards a better, brighter smile.

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The Beauty of Veneers

by on May 13, 2015 | Posted in Blog

Have you always wanted the perfect smile, but no matter how vigorously you stick to a flossing and brushing regimen, you’re not quite happy with it? You’re not alone — millions of Americans are unhappy with their smile and want to make it better. To accomplish this, dental patients often turn to dental veneers, which can take care of a slew of problems that many people are suffering from.

If you’ve been considering the application of veneers as a way to improve your teeth and overall appearance, you’re in luck because that’s exactly what we’ll be discussing today.

A Little History Lesson

People tend to believe that dental veneers are a relatively new concept, but the truth is that their history started back in 1928. A movie was filming in California that called for the temporary alteration of the appearance of an actor’s teeth, but none of the current techniques looked good enough for the director. The producers hired a local dentist, Charles Pincus, to develop a practical and effective way to do this, and Dr. Pincus came up with the veneers. Nearly a decade later, he expanded on his invention and fabricated acrylic veneers. At the time, they were very temporary due to a lack of adhesion, but luckily for us, these dental applications have evolved nicely over the years.

So … What Exactly are Dental Veneers?

Quite simply, a dental veneer is a thin shell that is bonded to the front of your teeth in order to achieve a natural, attractive appearance. They allow for a cosmetic use while fixing teeth that have been chipped, stained, misaligned, etc. They can even fix the appearance of abnormally spaced teeth.

Dental veneers are created by a dental technician in a laboratory environment. There are two types of veneers — composite resin and porcelain. Composite resin is a mixture of plastic and fine glass particles used for fillings, whereas a porcelain veneer consists of … well, porcelain, obviously. Some people are hesitant of porcelain because they feel that this material is brittle. While that is true, once firmly bonded to your teeth with a resin cement, this material typically becomes very durable and resistant to damage.

How Long Do Veneers Last?

Whether you choose composite resin or porcelain veneers, it is important to realize that neither will last forever. Many patients choose composite resin because they’re a less expensive choice. The downside is that they only last between four and eight years. Porcelain veneers, which can cost several times more than composite, will often last up to 20 years, though the average is between 10 and 15 years.

Part of achieving this longevity, of course, is determined by the care you take. Many patients believe that they no longer need to care for their teeth as well as they had in the past because now they are “protected” by the veneers. This is simply not true. Veneers must be cared for in the same way as your teeth. This means flossing and brushing at least twice a day, in addition to a cleaning every six months. Stick with this maintenance schedule and your veneers are more likely to last for quite a while, especially the porcelain ones.

Whether the desire for dental veneers or other dental procedures is due to a problem with your teeth or more of a cosmetic nature, you have plenty of options to choose from that will give you the smile you’ve always wanted. The professionals at the offices of Bruce C. McArthur, DDS are always available to field any questions that you may have, and we’ll make each dental visit as nice and comfortable as possible. Contact us today with any questions about procedures or dental care!

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