What is Cosmetic Dentistry?

Did you know that a significant number of individuals in the UK, approximately one in four, are unhappy with their smile? Fortunately, advancements in modern dentistry have expanded beyond basic dental procedures like fillings and extractions. Cosmetic dentistry now provides a range of options to improve the appearance of teeth. Its primary objective is to create straighter, reshaped, lighter, and repaired teeth, resulting in natural-looking outcomes for patients.

At our practice, we offer a wide array of effective cosmetic treatments to address various concerns, including tooth discoloration, wear, chips, or misalignment.

Dental Veneers

Dental veneers possess a remarkable ability to enhance the natural appearance and vitality of teeth, resulting in a healthy and authentic look. These thin shells, bonded securely to the teeth using a strong adhesive similar to super glue, require minimal tooth preparation. Porcelain veneers offer an excellent opportunity to improve the colour, shape, and alignment of teeth.

With the ability to select the precise shade of porcelain, it is possible to achieve desired colour enhancements for single discoloured or stained teeth, as well as brighten the overall appearance of the front teeth, typically the upper ones. Additionally, veneers can be employed to close small gaps when traditional orthodontic treatment like braces may not be suitable.

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Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening treatment can rejuvenate your smile, restoring its brilliance and enhancing your self-confidence. This non-invasive procedure is the only method that can effectively lighten the shade of your teeth without the need for any invasive measures.

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Composite Bonding

Composite bonding is a cosmetic procedure that involves skillfully applying a composite material to reshape, rebuild, or fill damaged teeth. This straightforward and minimally invasive treatment is an excellent option for enhancing the aesthetic appeal of your smile, particularly if you have minor gaps, chips, or worn teeth. It offers remarkable versatility for various types of dental repairs. Typically, composite bonding can be completed in a single dental appointment.

Your dentist will carefully match the color of the composite resin to ensure a seamless and natural-looking result. The resin will then be applied to the targeted tooth and skillfully shaped to achieve the desired outcome. By bonding tooth-colored composite material to your existing teeth, it becomes possible to positively transform their shape, size, and overall appearance. The best part is that this procedure is generally pain-free, as drilling of the teeth is often unnecessary during the bonding process.

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Dental Crowns

A dental crown is a dental restoration used to repair teeth that have been fractured, weakened by decay, or have large fillings. It covers and encases the remaining structure of the prepared tooth, providing strength and restoring its natural shape.

Additionally, dental crowns can be customised to match the colour of your natural teeth, blending seamlessly with your smile. If you have discolored fillings and desire an improved appearance, a crown can be an excellent solution.

Furthermore, crowns can serve as an anchor to secure a dental bridge or denture in place within the mouth. These versatile restorations can be crafted from various materials, including metal, porcelain, or porcelain bonded to metal, depending on your specific needs and preferences.

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Cosmetic Dentistry FAQs

What is a dental crown?

A dental crown, often referred to as a "cap," is a dental restoration that is placed over a tooth to restore its shape, size, strength, and appearance. The crown covers the entire visible portion of the tooth above the gum line when it is cemented into place. By fully encasing the tooth, the crown provides protection and helps to improve the tooth's overall functionality and aesthetic appeal.

Why would I need a dental crown needed?

A dental crown may be needed for a number of reasons:

  • To safeguard a vulnerable tooth from fracturing or to unite fragmented sections of a cracked tooth

  • To provide coverage and reinforcement for a tooth with a substantial filling when there is limited natural tooth structure remaining

  • To repair a tooth that is already fractured or extensively worn down

  • To cover misshaped or severely discoloured teeth

  • To cover a dental implant

What is the crown treatment process?

The process of getting a dental crown involves two visits to the dentist. During the initial visit, your dentist will examine and prepare the damaged tooth, and during the second visit, the permanent crown will be placed.

Before creating the crown, your dentist will numb the tooth and surrounding gum tissue. The tooth will then be reshaped to accommodate the crown, and an impression will be taken to ensure a proper fit. These impressions, along with those of the adjacent teeth, will be sent to a dental laboratory where the crown will be crafted. Typically, it takes 2 to 3 weeks for the crown to be ready. In the meantime, a temporary acrylic crown will be placed.

On your follow-up visit, the temporary crown will be removed, and your dentist will check the colour and fit of the permanent crown. If everything is satisfactory, a local anesthetic will be administered, and the permanent crown will be securely cemented in place.

What types of Crowns are available?

Permanent crowns can be crafted from various materials, including metal, porcelain-fused-to-metal, resin, or ceramic. Metal crowns, such as gold alloy or other alloys, require less tooth structure removal and are highly durable against biting and chewing forces. They have a longer lifespan and are resistant to chipping or breaking. However, their metallic appearance makes them more suitable for molars that are not visible.Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns can be color-matched to blend with your natural teeth.

Although they offer good aesthetics, they can cause more wear on opposing teeth compared to metal or resin crowns. There is a possibility of chipping or fracturing of the porcelain portion, and a dark line may become visible near the gum line if gums recede.

These crowns are a suitable choice for both front and back teeth.All-resin dental crowns are more cost-effective but tend to wear down over time and are prone to fractures.All-ceramic or all-porcelain dental crowns provide the best natural color match and are ideal for individuals with metal allergies. However, they are not as strong as other types of crowns and may cause slightly more wear on opposing teeth. All-ceramic crowns are commonly used for front teeth to achieve optimal aesthetics.

Temporary crowns, made by your dentist, are typically crafted from acrylic or stainless steel. They serve as interim restorations until the permanent crown is created by a dental laboratory.

What problems could occur with a dental crown?

Discomfort or sensitivity. Your newly crowned tooth may be sensitive immediately after the procedure, when the anaesthesia begins, to wear off and you may experience some heat and cold sensitivity. Your dentist may recommend that you brush your teeth with toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth. If you find you are getting pain or sensitivity that occurs when you bite down, there is no need to worry, call the front desk team and make an appointment to see your dentist as it usually means that the crown is too high on the tooth.

Chipped crown. Crowns can sometimes chip. If the chip is small, a resin can be used to repair this with the crown staying in your mouth. If more than a chip, the crown may need to be replaced.

Loose crown. Sometimes the cement washes out from under the crown. This allows the crown to become loose and bacteria to get in and cause decay to the tooth that remains. If your crown feels loose, call and speak to the practice's front desk team who will be able to make you an appointment.

Crown falls off. Sometimes a crown may fall off. If this happens, clean the crown and the front of your tooth. You can replace the crown temporarily using dental adhesive or temporary tooth cement that is sold in stores for this purpose. Contact the practice's front desk team immediately and they can make you an appointment with your dentist to either re-cement your crown in place; if not, a new crown will need to be made.

Allergic reaction. Because the metals used to make crowns are usually a mixture of metals, an allergic reaction to the metals or porcelain used in crowns may occur, but this is extremely rare.

Dark line on crowned tooth next to the gum line. A dark line next to the gum line of your crowned tooth is normal, particularly if you have a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown. This dark line is simply the metal of the crown showing through.

How long do crowns last?

Typically, dental crowns have an average lifespan of 5 to 15 years. The longevity of a crown is influenced by factors such as the level of wear and tear it endures, the quality of oral hygiene maintained, and individual dental habits. To maximise the lifespan of your crown, it is advisable to refrain from teeth grinding or clenching, avoid chewing on ice or biting fingernails, and refrain from using your teeth to open packages or exert excessive force. By practicing these precautions, you can help ensure the durability and longevity of your dental crown.