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Frequently Asked Cosmetic Dentist Questions

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Cosmetic dentists specialise in fixing dental issues that hamper your ability to smile with confidence, which includes chipped and cracked teeth, yellow teeth and replacing teeth that a dentist has extracted due to injury or decay. If you are contemplating a visit to the cosmetic dentist for the first time, here are the answers to some commonly-asked questions to help you understand the services they can offer you:

What Are Veneers? -- Veneers are thin layers of porcelain or composite resin material that are bonded to your teeth to repair dental issues such as chipped teeth, uneven teeth, cracked teeth and significant gaps between teeth. Porcelain veneers are stronger and more durable than composite resin veneers, so you will pay more to get these veneers, but you also have the peace of mind of knowing that they will last longer.

Veneers are most often used on your front teeth, because those are the teeth that are visible when you smile. You can get veneers for back teeth, but dentists consider this an inefficient way of spending your money because those teeth are hidden from sight when you smile and don't offer you good value when it comes to your appearance.

What Are Implants? -- Dental implants are shaped like tiny posts, and are most often made from titanium. They are inserted into the bone of a missing tooth in order to replace the root of a tooth that has been extracted due to a serious dental issue. Implants are permanent fixtures, so they are designed to last you a lifetime, which isn't the case for dental devices such as dentures.

The implant is designed to grow into the bone of your jaw after a few months, which then allows a cosmetic dentist to place a crown on top of the implant, completing the restoration. A crown is shaped exactly like your missing tooth, and is commonly made from porcelain, which is the most affordable type of crown a cosmetic dentist can make for you.

However, if you want a crown that is made to last a lifetime, you can choose a gold crown, which is very strong and won't crack when you eat hard candy, hard-shelled nuts and other food that can damage a porcelain crown.

What Is In-Office Teeth Whitening? -- Laser teeth whitening is the in-office whitening treatment that cosmetic dentists can offer you. In this process, your dentist will apply hydrogen peroxide gel to your teeth then shine laser light on your teeth to activate the gel and trigger the cleaning.

You will usually have three treatments within an hour's time when you opt for laser whitening, and several shades of whitening is a typical result. Cosmetic dentists can also give you a take-home whitening package, which includes a customised dental tray and gel. Laser teeth whitening is the quickest way to whiten your teeth, but it is also more expensive than the take-home dental tray whitening method, which is effective, but takes several weeks before results are evident.