You might draw the line at some of the more common ways to improve the look of your teeth—namely dental crowns and veneers. These options are permanent, since some of your tooth structure has to be removed before the restoration can be added, and you may not feel entirely comfortable with this. Why do some dental procedures call for the removal of some of the tooth's surface? And does this mean that your dentist can't do much to improve the look of your teeth?
Crowns and Veneers
A dental crown is a cap that fits over the whole tooth and is typically made of porcelain. It's ultra-thin, but simply slipping it over an existing tooth would result in a far bulkier tooth. This would create friction with neighboring teeth, and would even disrupt occlusion (the correct connection between your upper and lower teeth). A dental veneer is bonded to the mesial (outward-facing) side of the tooth and is also typically made of porcelain. Again, simply adding a veneer to an existing tooth would increase the mass of the tooth to an unacceptable degree.
For the success of the restoration and your ongoing dental health, a thin layer of the tooth's surface layer (called dental enamel) is painlessly removed (filed away) before the crown or veneer is added. This means that the restored tooth has the same dimensions as the pre-treatment tooth. The downside to this preparation is that it's permanent because dental enamel cannot grow back.
Enamel is the tooth's tough outermost layer which is its first line of defense against decay. There are no clinical concerns with removing enamel, as long as the tooth is fitted with a restoration. The porcelain crown or veneer then serves the same basic function as dental enamel. But you may still hesitate, as you don't want to commit to permanently needing one of these restorations. So is there an effective way to improve the look of your teeth without removing your protective enamel?
A Simple Transformation
Dental bonding uses the same tooth-colored composite resin that's used to fill a cavity. Instead of plugging a breach in the tooth's enamel, it's used to create a new outward-facing layer of the tooth. The resin is applied, sculpted, smoothed, and then dried with a special light. Bonding conceals surface imperfections, minor abnormalities, and discolorations, or it can make your teeth perfectly symmetrical. And it does all this without losing any of your dental enamel. As such, you also have the option to remove the bonding.
Contact your local dentist to learn more.Share
30 May 2023
Do you want to do everything in your power to keep your teeth beautiful and healthy? To help you accomplish this worthwhile task, consider visiting your trusted dentist twice each year. During this time, you can get your pearly whites cleaned and examined. Besides seeing your dentist semi-annually, brush your teeth at least twice each day. Make sure to floss at least once a day too. Drink a glass of water after mealtimes. Doing so helps wash away food particles on your teeth. On this blog, I hope you will discover simple, ingenious tips to help you maintain your gorgeous smile. Enjoy!