How to make the most of your smile
Most of us get a little twinge at the thought of going to the dentist. The drill, the shooting sensitivity pains – none of it really adds up to a joyous hour. That’s probably why a lot of people don’t bother to fix their smile, even if they are fastidious about all other areas of beauty.
But this is 2015 and things have a come a long way. New techniques mean flashing a killer grin doesn’t have to be a painful process – that’s right, having your teeth filed down for veneers is no longer the only option.
“Dentistry’s changed a lot in the last five, 10 years,” Dr. Rhona Eskander of the Chelsea Dental Clinic in London, UK, told Cover Media. “You probably will have read that a lot of people wanted to get veneers to improve the appearance of their teeth? Instead there is bonding. Now bonding is using a material called composite – a white filling material. The reason why I love it is because you can add to the structure of teeth without cutting the teeth down. So say some of your edges are a little bit uneven, with bonding what you do is, you prepare the enamel and then you glue onto it what you’ve effectively lost. It’s painless, you don’t need an injection for it in some cases… it’s non-harmful to the mouth and it just helps restore the edges. It makes everything nicer and it’s also relatively inexpensive compared to porcelain work.”
Like everything there is also a downside to this procedure; bonding doesn’t last forever. You will need maintenance because it’s prone to chipping, just like any filling is. It may also stain, particularly if you’re a stickler for things like coffee and red wine, or if you smoke. Regular trips to the dentist – every six months – will sort that out though, as a normal scale and polish will make sure your bonding stays fresh.
“Generally speaking they need to be replaced every five to 10 years,” the dentist added. “If it chips, you’ve chipped the composite not your teeth, your teeth aren’t going to be any more chipped than they already were.”
Another easy fix is for a wonky smile. You’ll likely think the days of being able to improve that are well behind you, after all not many women want to rock train track braces while they’re in the office. Again, things have modernised and a new type of brace takes the stress out of straightening teeth. According to Dr. Eskander, bonding combined with invisalign is the easiest way to bag yourself a Hollywood mouth.
“I would say that nine times out of 10 when patients come to me they’ll say to me, ‘Rhonda I want a better smile, shall I get veneers? Oh but I don’t want my teeth to be cut down, what do you think?’ And I always go through orthodontic treatment with them,” she said. “The reason why I love invisalign is that it’s plastic trays, it’s really easy, it fits with the modern day person. If you have jobs where you have to talk to people, you can pop it out if you need to. That will straighten the teeth beautifully because effectively straight teeth are beautiful teeth but that’s not all that it’s about. Once the teeth are straight, you can see how uneven your edges will be and then bonding, which is gluing onto the surfaces of the teeth, makes all that difference.”