When you think about going to the dentist, you may imagine it’s all scales, polishes, or worse, drills! However, dentistry has evolved into many areas and one of these is cosmetic dentistry.
With pictures in magazines of Hollywood smiles and the emergence of social media, where your face can be seen in zillions of photographs, it’s certainly a contributing factor to the rise in popularity of cosmetic dental treatments.
While patients need to be educated by their dentist about the realistic outcomes that can be achieved without the use of Photoshop, there are many happy patients who have treatments in the UK each year.
A British Orthodontic Survey in 2021 revealed that during the lockdown, there was a ‘Zoom boom’ in the demand for cosmetic treatments.
People were seeing themselves on screen during meetings and 86% of orthodontists reported a rise in demand for cosmetic dental treatments, and 55% of this was attributed to social factors and patient expectations.
While lockdowns may be a hazy memory, the demand for cosmetic procedures is not.
One of the most popular treatments is teeth whitening, however, this is only suitable for certain causes of discolored teeth, such as caffeine, red wine, or certain foods.
Other causes of discoloured teeth can include certain illnesses and medications, which may not be remedied with teeth whitening. In this case, patients may be offered veneers in London.
What are veneers?
There are two types of veneers: composite bonding and porcelain veneers. Composite bonding involves applying a resin to a chipped or cracked tooth, or one that needs lengthening to be in line with other teeth, for example.
The tooth is first prepared by the dentist, who roughens the area and applies a dental moisturizer to encourage the bonding of the tooth to the resin.
They then apply the resin, shape it and then hold a blue light over it to harden it. The dentist can then continue to shape and smooth the tooth as required.
This should be a painless procedure and will only require a single appointment. Composite bonding veneers don’t last as long as porcelain, however, with a lifespan of around 10 years as long as they are not damaged on hard food or by biting fingernails.
On the other hand, porcelain veneers last for up to 15 years. Being made of porcelain, they are more durable and as long as they are looked after by cleaning them with brushing and flossing, as well as having check-ups with your dentist, they should last well.
A dentist will prepare the tooth and attach temporary veneers, having taken impressions of the size and shape of your teeth for a ceramist to manufacture the veneers for you.
When these arrive, you will return to have them placed over your tooth, like a false fingernail. You can have a single or multiple teeth treated using veneers, and they are placed on the front teeth that are visible, when you are smiling.
Anything else I should know?
To find out about any of the cosmetic treatments that are available, check out a dental practice’s website to see what the treatment list is, or ring the practice for more information.
You may like to visit an award-winning dental practice, so look out for those who are winners of accolades such as The Dental Awards or the Private Dentistry Awards, for example.
Once you have chosen your dentist, you can book in for a consultation to find out what treatments are suitable for you and start to get treatment that can make your desires become a reality!