Where patients had few options for truly perfecting their smiles only a decade ago, the world of cosmetic dentistry now allows for absolute idealization through a variety of dental treatments. Today’s average cosmetic dentistry patient spends between $5000 and $6000 on procedures to improve their smiles, a fact that emphasizes the importance of a great grin. Procedures classified as “cosmetic” include those performed without a medical reason and can include dental implants, porcelain veneers, or orthodontic care.
Dental implants are designed to completely replace missing teeth, looking, feeling, and functioning exactly the same as natural teeth. Essentially, the process involves the installation of replacement tooth roots which bond to the jawbone over the course of several weeks. Once they’ve fully bonded, abutments and crowns are attached to the implants themselves. Mini dental implants can be placed for minor replacements and, like traditional implants, are made from various titanium alloys. This relatively new dental technology has all but replaced dentures, especially because of its 98% success rate.
Veneers are bonded on top of existing teeth to correct shape or color. Typically used to correct chipped teeth, they are infinitesimally thin and bonded permanently to teeth. Veneers can be fairly expensive, which is why they’re less popular for cosmetic purposes. Still, celebrities have been known to use porcelain veneers to correct simple matters of asymmetry or discoloration. Veneers are completely permanent, sometimes causing trouble for patients who experience future discoloration.
Defined as the specialty of dentistry concerned with the study and treatment of improper bites. Though most patients consider orthodontics as a practice primarily dealing with children, the truth is that 30% of all orthodontic patients in the U.S. are adults. Most adults opt for Invisalign or other invisible braces, though some adult patients opt for traditional metal braces. Correction of malocclusions is not only important for cosmetic purposes but for oral health.
The procedures designed to fix cosmetic issues have become increasingly advanced and will undoubtedly continue down that path. Already, in the last decade or so, new technologies have allowed for new and exciting procedures. One can only imagine what the next couple of years will bring! Learn more about this topic here.