Many of the patients who visit our dentist office in Grove, OK ask about cosmetic dentistry treatments to enhance their appearance. Sometimes individuals may only need a single procedure to drastically improve their smile – such as teeth whitening or dental bonding. In other cases, multiple cosmetic treatments can be combined into one comprehensive plan. Referred to as a smile makeover, this treatment is fully tailored to each patient’s unique needs. In this article, Dr. Karl R. Jobst explores some of the most common topics regarding smile makeovers.
Commonly Combined Procedures
Smile makeovers vary from patient to patient. The treatment recommended for you depends on your own specific desires and preferences. Some of the most commonly combined cosmetic treatments at our dentist office in Grove, OK include:
· Dental bonding: Minor flaws such as chips, cracks, misalignment, and discoloration can be concealed with dental bonding. This procedure involves the application of a tooth-colored resin material. Once the material is shaped and molded, it’s hardened with a special curing light and polished to a natural-looking shine. The same composite material is used to place tooth-colored fillings. Many of our patients wish to have their old silver fillings replaced with white composite ones.
· Porcelain veneers: These thin-but-durable restorations are custom-designed to your unique smile and dental anatomy. Custom-shaded, they are affixed to the front surfaces of the teeth to bring balance and symmetry to your smile.
· Teeth whitening: Over time, certain foods and beverages can stain the teeth, leaving them yellow or discolored. Professional teeth whitening can brighten your smile by several shades in a single visit to our dentist office in Grove, OK.
· Gum lift: The gums should frame the teeth delicately. If excess gum tissue is present, it can result in an unbalanced appearance. A “gummy smile” can be addressed by cosmetic gum contouring, also known as a gum lift. During this procedure, excess tissue is removed, and the existing gum line is reshaped.
· Tooth contouring: Also known as enameloplasty, tooth contouring can change the width or height of a tooth. This procedure is often performed to camouflage minor imperfections or misalignment. In many cases, tooth contouring is completed in conjunction with a gum lift for optimal results.
· Invisalign®: A straight smile is not only more attractive, it’s also healthier. We offer Invisalign at our dentist office in Grove, OK. This orthodontic system is a clear, discreet alternative to traditional metal braces, and can correct most of the same issues in a similar timeframe.
In addition to these common smile makeover procedures, restorative treatments may sometimes be necessary as well. Though restorative procedures aren’t technically part of a smile makeover, they’re often completed prior to or in conjunction with a smile makeover.
Smile Makeover Candidacy
Candidates for a smile makeover wish to conceal cosmetic imperfections and enhance their smile. They may have:
· Gaps or spaces between the teeth
· Crooked or overlapped teeth
· Tooth discoloration
· Cracked, chipped, or fractured teeth
· Tooth erosion
· Misshapen teeth
· Excess gum tissue, or a “gummy” smile
· An uneven gum line
Smile makeovers are strictly cosmetic in nature. For this reason, candidates must be in good oral health before pursuing treatment. If you have current issues such as tooth decay, gum disease, or other conditions, those must be addressed first. Once oral health is stable, we can explore cosmetic options.
Existing Conditions that May Affect Candidacy
Here are a few of the most common oral health conditions that could affect smile makeover candidacy:
· Extensive tooth decay: Left untreated, cavities will only worsen. When bacteria spread, they begin to affect the health of the adjacent teeth. If tooth decay is present, you’ll need to have it treated before exploring cosmetic options.
· Periodontal disease: A leading cause of tooth loss, gum disease is characterized by red, swollen, tender gums. This inflammation is caused by the accumulation of plaque at the gum line. Left untreated, this infection can spread beneath the gums and erode the supporting jawbone. If we perform cosmetic treatments while gum disease is active, it can impede the results of treatment and increase the risk for further damage.
· Bruxism: Chronic grinding or clenching of the teeth can have a negative impact on oral health. Bruxism can cause tooth erosion, and it can exacerbate TMD symptoms. If you are considering a smile makeover, you’ll need to have bruxism treatment completed first. This often consists of the fabrication of a custom oral appliance. These devices place the jaw in a more favorable position and protect the teeth from extreme pressure.
· Severe orthodontic misalignment: True, Invisalign can correct a number of orthodontic issues, including overbites, underbites, open bites, crossbites, and more. However, if your malocclusion is due to skeletal discrepancies, you may require more advanced treatment, such as conventional braces or oral surgery.
If any of these issues are detected during your visit to our dentist office in Grove, OK, Dr. Jobst will discuss your options with you. Together, you can come up with a treatment plan to achieve the smile you desire.
Planning Your Smile Makeover
During your initial consultation, our team will discuss your cosmetic goals with you in more detail. X-rays, photos, impressions, and other diagnostic information will be gathered.
Once the proper procedures have been determined, we’ll create a mockup to give you an idea of how your smile will look after treatment. At our practice, we believe patients are an integral aspect of treatment planning. We’ll listen to your needs and concerns every step of the way to ensure you achieve the results you desire.
How Long Does a Smile Makeover Take?
Patients visiting our dentist office in Grove, OK want to know how long a smile makeover takes. The answer to this question depends on your specific goals. Because each individual’s needs are different, recommended treatment will vary. As a result, no two treatment timelines are the same.
A patient who only needs teeth whitening and dental bonding may be able to complete treatment in one office visit. Conversely, Invisalign takes about 12 to 18 months on average, and multiple visits are necessary. During your consultation with Dr. Jobst, he’ll be able to give you a basic overview of your treatment timeline.
Maintaining Your Results
The first step in maintaining the results of your smile makeover is to attend routine dental exams and cleanings. During these appointments, Dr. Jobst can identify any potential problems and treat them before they worsen.
Secondly, it’s important to practice diligent oral hygiene at home. Patients should brush at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss once daily. Consume dark-colored foods and beverages in moderation, and never use your teeth to open packages or tear tags off of clothing.
Following these simple guidelines will reduce the risk of damage and help preserve your oral health for years to come.
Contact Our Dentist Office in Grove, OKIf you’re interested in a smile makeover – or any of the other procedures we offer – schedule an appointment at our dentist office in Grove, OK. Contact us online anytime or call us at (918) 787-5800.