Three Options To Create A More Even Smile

Do you feel as though your smile is less than perfect? If minor unevenness of your teeth is your main complaint, there are three common options available to you that can remedy the problem. The following guide can help you decide which one is the right choice for you.

Option #1: Porcelain Veneers

This is arguably one of the better known options. For veneers, your dentist will file down your teeth just enough so that they can slip a thin porcelain cap over each tooth. The caps are then cemented into place to make them permanent. Veneers are a lifelong choice, since the removal of that top layer of enamel means that you can't leave your teeth uncovered.

Choose veneers when your teeth are straight but they have uneven shapes or sizes. Veneers are also a good choice if you have discolored teeth that can't be whitened because the discoloration is an actual part of the tooth. Veneers perform just like your real teeth and don't require any special maintenance.

Option #2: Dental Contouring and Reshaping

If you only have a few minor defects to fix, then contouring may be the best option. A cosmetic dentist will smooth out rough spots, fix minor chips, or reshape overlarge or pointed teeth so that they match the rest of your smile. They do this by lightly sanding down the enamel using a drill and laser, and then polishing the teeth to a shine. The process typically takes only one office visit, so the results are immediate.

Contouring is a good choice if you only have one or two problematic teeth, and you are otherwise happy with the rest of your smile. It's also a good option if you are hoping for quick results. The only concern is that you may develop some hot and cold sensitivity, since some of the enamel has been removed from the teeth.

Option #3: Tooth Bonding

This final option also works best when there is only a tooth or two needing work. Bonding works well on teeth with larger chips, those with uneven edges, or those that are smaller than the rest of your teeth. Your dentist will lightly sand the tooth to roughen up the surface. They may also do some slight contouring if necessary to prepare the tooth. A composite resin, colored to match your normal teeth, is then placed upon the tooth and shaped to resemble your real tooth.

Much like contouring, bonding provides immediate results. It's a good choice if you don't have enough issues to warrant veneers, but there is damage or unevenness of a type that can't be treated with contouring.

To learn more, contact a dental center like Charlottesville Dental Medicine at Forest Lakes.