Most of us grew up going to the dentist for checkups. Occasionally, there would be a problem like a cavity, and our dentist would repair the tooth. This is known as restorative dentistry. Its primary focus is to keep our teeth healthy and functional.
However, teeth are one of the most noticeable features people have, and their appearance is important to our self-image. If you have stained, worn, or misaligned teeth, you might even be too self-conscious to smile!
Esthetic dentistry is a branch of dentistry that is focused on improving the appearance of teeth. It can also work in tandem with biomimetic dentistry to ensure that restorations look as natural as possible. Even if your teeth are perfectly functional, you can get treatments that will enhance the appearance of your smile and give you more confidence when you interact with the world.
WHAT KINDS OF ESTHETIC DENTISTRY ARE THERE?
There are lots of things that can degrade the appearance of teeth, so concurrently, there are lots of treatments and procedures that fall under the banner of esthetic dentistry. They include:
If you have missing teeth, or heavily damaged teeth that have to be extracted, you’ll end up with visible gaps between your teeth. Dentures are one option to fill these gaps, but they have pros and cons. Some patients prefer a more permanent solution to missing teeth.
Dental implants are manufactured artificial teeth that are mounted on metal bases, which are surgically implanted into the jaw. With implants, you can eat, smile, and talk like you would with natural teeth. You also need to care for them the way you would care for natural teeth.
Sometimes, a tooth can have a lot of damage to its exterior, but not enough damage to its inner structure to justify being removed. Also, cracks or chips can fall out of teeth that are too big or awkwardly placed to be restored through dental bonding alone.
This is where dental crowns come in. By placing a cap over the damaged tooth, the remaining natural tooth can be saved from further decay, while the exterior can be customized to blend right in with the surrounding teeth, down to its shape, color, and size.
Dental bridges are another unique strategy to replace missing teeth. They are composed of at least two crowns connected to an artificial tooth in the middle, called a pontic. The crowns are placed on the teeth adjacent to the gap, called the abutment teeth, with the pontic filling in the gap.
Bridges are different from implants in that the false tooth is not anchored directly into the gums and jaw; instead, it is held in place by the abutments on either side. However, It serves the same purpose of restoring chewing and speaking functions, keeping the teeth correctly spaced, and blending in with natural teeth for an improved smile.