Featured Image Caption: Female Dentist Curing Patient in Dental Clinic
Everyone needs some form of dental work done throughout their life. Whether that be something as simple as a cavity filling to something as invasive as braces or orthodontic work. If you find that your smile needs serious work, regular fillings or brushing extra hard aren’t going to cut it. You’ll need to take more advanced steps to fix your teeth and prevent future dental problems down the line. Here are just a few ways to take drastic measures for a better smile.
Crowns are a restoration method for severely damaged or decayed teeth that just need to be covered up rather than patched like you would with a filling. They cover the entire tooth above the gum, and they can be made from porcelain, gold, a metal alloy, or a porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) material. Different materials have different pros and cons, so it’s entirely up to you what you think would be best for your mouth. For example, porcelain crowns are unobtrusive since they can be color-matched to the rest of your teeth, but they’re also more expensive. Meanwhile, you might consider a gold crown, and while the metal will certainly be durable enough for your teeth it can also give some people an allergic reaction or risk looking tacky. No matter the material, crowns generally last between 10 – 15 years, but they can last even longer with good oral hygiene and regular check-ins with your dentist.
Veneers are a lot like crowns in the sense that they cover the tooth. Instead of wrapping around the entire thing, however, they’re only bonded to the front and forward-facing parts of your teeth, covering just what can be seen when you smile. As a result, a certain amount of tooth enamel will be shaved off to make room for them in order for them to both fit as best as possible within your mouth, and come off as less ostentatious. Veneers are usually made out of ceramic or porcelain for durability, longevity, and stain resistance. If you take good care of them, they can last for 15 years or more.
Dental implants are an option for both single and multi-tooth gaps in a smile. They mimic the appearance of natural teeth and can last for a lifetime thanks to their durability and the fact that they’re secured to your jaw bone. In this way, they’re some of the more literal and convincing replacements for teeth there are. In addition to preventing health hazards like bone resorption after dental decay, they can also bring stability to dentures and restore your ability to chew hard or sticky foods without damaging your teeth. It usually takes around six months for the entire implant process, so if you’re trying to fix your smile before a big event, plan ahead.
If the problem is with your gums and not your teeth, you might be a candidate for periodontal or gum surgery. It’s used to treat conditions such as gingivitis and periodontitis, and it can help to restore your smile if it’s been affected by things like receding gum lines or “black triangle” gaps between your teeth. Gum surgery can permanently fix certain dental problems as long as proper hygiene is maintained afterward.
These are just a few dental procedures available to you that can give you a brighter, whiter smile even after a lifetime of serious decay or trauma. There are many others, including professional teeth whitening or getting adult braces or surgery, so don’t be afraid to do further research beyond this list. Multiple options are available to you if you think you need dental work done.
By Kara Masterson
who is a freelance writer from Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max.