How do you feel when you look at your smile? Does it light up the room, or do you sometimes feel like hiding it, even when you’re happy? Having a less-than-perfect smile might seem like a permanent thing that could be embarrassing, but the good news is, you’re not stuck with it! A smile makeover can actually help you achieve the smile you’ve always wanted and give you a real reason to show it off.
So, What Exactly is a Smile Makeover?
Well, it’s like a special treatment for your smile that tackles any issues you might have with your teeth. It’s all about making your smile something you can feel really proud of. The cool thing is, what happens in your smile makeover is totally based on your own mouth and what you want to change. It’s like a customized upgrade to make your unique smile shine!
Ways to Do Smile Makeover
1. Getting Veneers
A common choice for a better smile is getting veneers. Veneers are like super-thin covers made of resin composite or porcelain that go on your teeth. They make your smile look white and even. You can use veneers on any teeth and they’re great for fixing chips, cracks, or teeth that don’t look quite right. The best part is, that they don’t get stained easily. So, you can still enjoy your favorite foods like coffee, chocolate, and red wine without worrying about more stains.
Veneers look totally natural. To put them on, a small bit of your tooth’s outer layer is removed, and then the veneer is attached. With good care, veneers can last up to 20 years. Taking care of them means brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time and flossing between your teeth at least once a day.
2. Caps or Crowns
Do you have teeth that are chipped, cracked, or have decay? It can be a bit awkward, especially if these problematic teeth are right at the front of your mouth. The good news is, that you can often save these teeth by using caps or crowns. Caps or crowns are made of a material called composite resin, and they match the color of your natural teeth. While crowns and veeners may sound the same there is something that makes them different. A porcelain veneer sticks to the front of your tooth, and a dental crown covers the whole tooth.
3. Teeth Whitening
Over time, your teeth can lose their shine, turning yellow and stained. This can make you look older and less attractive. Luckily, there’s a quick solution – teeth whitening!
Teeth whitening is affordable, easy, and safe. It’s perfect if you want to give your smile a boost or complement other dental work, like after braces. When done at the dentist, it’s personalized to make your teeth just as white as you want. They even take care of any sensitivity, which can happen sometimes.
4. Dental Bonding
Cosmetic bonding is a way to hide common imperfections in your smile in just one visit to the dentist. They use a tooth-colored material that sticks to your teeth, shapes it, and polishes it. Afterward, your changed tooth looks like it belongs there.
It’s a good choice because it doesn’t need a lot of changes to your teeth, unlike veneers. And it’s cheaper too! If you take care of it, bonding can last up to 10 years before you need to do anything to it, making it a smart investment in your smile.
5. Gum Contouring
Do your gums show too much when you smile? Or maybe your gums don’t look even? Gum contouring is a way to fix this without surgery. It can be done for just one tooth or more.
If you don’t want surgery, look for a dentist who does laser dentistry!
With dental lasers, your gums can be shaped gently. This makes it hurt less and you recover faster. Usually, fixing gums only needs one visit, and it costs less than other ways to make your smile better.
6. Tooth-colored Fillings
If you need a filling or want to change an old one, ask about colorful fillings. Colorful fillings use materials that match your teeth, not silver like the old ones. These fillings are better and safer because they stick tight to your tooth and don’t change size with hot or cold things.
7. Botox and Dermal Fillers
Improving your smile goes beyond just your teeth!
Dentists are now using Botox and dermal fillers for both cosmetic and helpful reasons. Here’s how they can make a difference:
- Reducing Wrinkles: Botox and fillers can make wrinkles and fine lines less noticeable.
- Plump Lips: They can add fullness to your lips.
- Relieving Pain: These treatments can also help with facial pain, tension, TMJ symptoms, headaches, and more.
So, not only can you look way younger with these facial treatments, but dentists are great at doing them. Dentists know a lot about faces, muscles, bones, and making things look good. They’re pros at giving these injections in sensitive areas.
8. Dentures and Bridges
If you don’t have some of your teeth, there are ways to fix it. Missing teeth can make you feel awkward and can even affect your jawbone over time. It might also make your other teeth move around, leading to more dental issues like cavities or gum problems.
One simple solution is using dentures or bridges. They look just like real teeth and can bring back your nice smile. Plus, they help keep your jaw and other teeth healthy.
9. Braces or Clear Aligners
Wire-and-bracket braces and clear aligners like Invisalign are the best choices for fixing crooked teeth and improving a misaligned bite. These treatments can take a few months to a few years, but the time you put in is totally worth it.
Most people picture wire-and-bracket braces when they think of braces. Each tooth gets a bracket, and a wire is threaded through them. Your dentist will replace and tighten this wire during your check-ups, which happen every few weeks. These appointments keep track of how well your treatment is going and make any needed adjustments. Cleaning wire-and-bracket braces is crucial because it’s easy for food and plaque to get stuck in the wires and brackets.
On the flip side, clear aligners use a safe plastic that’s free of BPA to cover your teeth and move them faster than wire-and-bracket braces can. They fit over your teeth and can be taken out for eating, drinking, and cleaning. It’s recommended to remove them for no more than two hours a day.
Clear aligners also mean fewer trips to the dentist or orthodontist for check-ups. Sometimes, you can even get two sets of aligners (one for this month, another for next) in one go, saving you a trip!
There you have it – your guide to a smile that lights up the room. From veneers to clear aligners, the options are as diverse as your unique smile. So, no more hiding that grin – let’s give your smile the makeover it deserves!
Written by: Dr. Anu Isaac, DMD, runs a successful dental clinic in Salem, MA. Dr. Isaac is committed to providing quality care since 2009.