A cosmetic dentist performs procedures every day that improve the look of a patient's smile and help build confidence. Veneers are an option for patients who do not like the appearance of the teeth due to shape, size, damage or alignment. Applying veneers involves a multi-step process that includes permanent removal of some of the…
Cosmetic Dentistry Treatments for Tooth Restoration
The primary goal of cosmetic dentistry is to restore the patient’s smile to a level that makes them feel confident. Tooth restoration is one of the most common cosmetic dentistry treatments, and there is a range of tooth restoration treatment options that are available for patients to choose from.
How are cosmetic dentistry treatments used to restore a tooth?
The most popular methods of tooth restoration are a dental crown, porcelain veneer, resin bonding procedure, dental filling, and dental implant. The best option depends largely on your personal preference and the severity of the concern that you are addressing.
After the tooth is prepared, the custom crown is placed over the entire tooth for an optimal fit and natural appearance; a dental crown is indistinguishable from a natural tooth. For cosmetic dentistry purposes, a ceramic crown is most often recommended. However, there are other material options to consider, including porcelain-fused-to-metal, metal alloy, and gold alloy.
A porcelain veneer is a popular option when the primary goal is to improve the appearance of the tooth rather than address a larger oral health concern. A porcelain veneer is a small customized layer of tooth-colored material that is placed over the front surface of a highly visible tooth. It is a minimally invasive way to repair a tooth chip or crack, tooth stains, short teeth, uneven teeth, gaps between teeth, and misshapen teeth.
Resin bonding is a popular alternative to a porcelain veneer. Unlike veneers that require a longer treatment process, resin bonding procedures can typically be performed in-office as soon as the first visit. It is used to treat similar concerns as a porcelain veneer, including damaged teeth, tooth stains, and misshapen or uneven teeth. A composite resin material is used, which can be matched to the natural shade of the patient’s teeth.
A dental filling is most commonly used to treat a dental cavity, which is a small hole that forms on a tooth as a result of bacterial attacks on the enamel. A dental filling is non-invasive and restores the appearance of the patient’s tooth.
A dental implant is often recommended if the tooth in question cannot be saved. This involves an extraction of the tooth, followed by the placement of a dental implant, abutment, and tooth-colored dental crown. A dental implant is typically considered superior to other replacement solutions as it can last for more than 20 years in many cases and help preserve the density inside the jawbone.
How to choose the best cosmetic dentistry treatment for you
The following are several key factors to consider when choosing the best cosmetic dentistry treatment solution for your tooth restoration needs.
Determine your insurance coverage and budget
Dental insurance covers the cost for most diagnostic and preventive procedures in most cases, including dental x-rays, comprehensive oral examinations, and routine dental cleaning procedures. Many restorative procedures are also covered, depending on the extent of the dental coverage and other specific policy details.
However, cosmetic dentistry procedures are not usually covered by dental insurance unless they also offer a restorative and oral health benefit. It is important to understand what is covered by your dental insurance and what costs you must pay. For those who do not have dental insurance, it is important to establish your budget and payment plan before cosmetic dentistry.
Consider the long-term durability and maintenance of each option
As discussed, not all types of tooth restorations are the same, and some cosmetic treatment options are more durable than others. For example, while porcelain veneers and composite bonding are used to fix similar cosmetic and oral health concerns, dental veneers last much longer on average. The level of care that you should provide to the restoration and the life expectancy of each restoration type you consider should factor into your decision.
Discuss all options with a licensed dental professional
The best way to make an informed decision about tooth restoration is to discuss all of your available treatment options with a dentist during a consultation visit.
Are you considering a cosmetic dentistry treatment?
A visit with our dental team provides you the opportunity to learn more about the pros and cons of each treatment option that is available to you and to put together a plan to restore your tooth (or teeth). Contact our dental office today to schedule a convenient time to come in for a visit
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