A few years ago, I started thinking carefully about what I could do to improve my smile. I had lived with crooked, yellowed teeth for most of my adult life, and honestly, I just wanted to feel beautiful. I started thinking about working with a cosmetic dentist, and before I knew it, I was in an office getting a complimentary consultation. I learned about a variety of different procedures that could improve my look, and it was really fun. I wanted to create a blog all about making smiles more beautiful, which is why I made this website. Check out this blog for great information about dentistry.
Americans love straight, white teeth. In fact, while we expect to see teens suffering from angst while sporting a "brace face," a whooping 1.2 million adults each year endure braces in their quest for straight teeth in the United States. In addition, 45 million adults have their teeth professionally whitened each year, indicating that a perfect smile is very important here.
As interest in whiter, straighter teeth has grown, so has the list of available products and services that can get the job done, both over-the-counter as well as in-office treatments. Which ones are right for you and your budget?
The least-invasive procedure and the easiest at-home solution is simply the use of a whitening toothpaste in lieu of your regular toothpaste. With added hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide, these products clean and brighten teeth and remove stains with prolonged use. Contrary to popular belief, they do not actual "bleach" your teeth. Brushing and flossing on a regular schedule is still needed.
Both adhesive strips and whitening trays are available over the counter for at-home use. These products are generally left on for up to 30 minutes so the hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide gel can do its work. Although many whitening trays are on the market, the American Dental Association has given its seal of approval only to a Crest product.
In-Office Whitening with LED
Similar trays of thick, peroxide gel are used in office and combined with LED light application, which amplifies the effects of the product. Several appointments may be necessary to get the desired effect. The effects are not permanent but can be long-lasting with proper care and avoidance of staining liquids, like tea and coffee.
If you need whitening and straightening in one product, porcelain veneers may be the right choice for you. This in-office visit (usually two trips) involves applying a thin piece of porcelain veneer over the teeth. This allows the dentist to choose a shade of white that complements the patient's complexion while tweaking the placement to conceal and adjust crooked teeth, gaps, and proportionately small teeth. The process needs to be repeated every 15 to 20 years, depending on how well the patient takes care of the veneers over time.
When people think of braces, they often imagine the classic "brace face" mouth full of encompassing metal bands. Those bands have given way to smaller and less noticeable, yet equally effective, metal and clear braces that adhere directly to the front of the tooth. While these metal braces are still available, companies are constantly bringing new options to the market that are more comfortable and just as effective in straightening teeth. Metal braces are the winner, however, for teeth that need to be moved or turned large distances (relatively speaking) in the mouth. They are superior to other products in hardcore straightening cases.
One of the newer contenders is clear, plastic aligners. Depending on the patient's dental needs, aligners may be worn throughout the day or just at night. The most appealing part of this particular product is the fact that it is nearly invisible, allowing teens and adults to fix crooked teeth without all the unwanted attention that traditional, metal braces can bring. Aligners can also reduce the time spent in the dentist office because patients can use a preordered supply that slowly moves teeth into position through slight changes in each consecutive aligner.
Even if you are not interested in an overly white "Hollywood" smile, the advances in modern dental practices make it easy to tweak both the color of your teeth as well as their position in your mouth. Talk to your dentist for more information.Share
10 December 2018