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Alvin Lee, DDS
Evaluating Your Smile
Dental Care of Bowie, LLC

Evaluating Your Smile

Have you recently taken a close look at your face and smile? Do you like what you see? Would you appreciate a change? Would you like to see a whiter, straighter or more attractive smile? If so, now is the time to start discovering the wonders of cosmetic dentistry.
Treatment Choices For a New Smile
Due to advances in materials and techniques during the past 25 years, cosmetic dentistry has made great gains. Today, there are many options for solving cosmetic dental problems. Because of these new procedures and materials, you can have more natural-looking and attractive teeth.
If you dont like the shape of your teeth, their contours can be changed for a more pleasing appearance. If the color is too dark, you can try professional bleaching. Chips, cracks or fractures can be repaired with bonding, and veneers can cover a multitude of problems like gaps, stains, poor shape, or teeth that are out of alignment. Tooth-colored materials are used to repair decay, and sealants help protect the teeth.
Less visible and “invisible” braces may help make treatment possible for those individuals who have important cosmetic concerns. The braces may be placed on the back side of the teeth so they are not visible. In some cases, treatment may be done without using braces at all by using a series of clear plastic removable mouthpiece-like aligners.
Because of these new procedures and materials, you can have more natural-looking and attractive teeth.
Options Include
Veneers – thin custom-made shells that are designed to cover the front side of teeth. Made of tooth-colored materials, veneers are used to treat spaces between teeth and teeth that are permanently stained, poorly shaped or slightly crooked. They may also cover teeth that are chipped or worn.
Tooth Whitening – also called bleaching – is a procedure that brightens teeth that are discolored, stained, or have been darkened because of injury. It can be performed on living teeth or teeth that have had root canal treatment.
Bonding – a cosmetic procedure that can improve the appearance of teeth that are chipped, broken, cracked, stained, or have spaces between them. With bonding, tooth-colored materials are attached, or bonded, to a tooth surface. The process can improve unsightly stains from coffee, tea, tobacco or certain childhood medications; front-tooth spaces; and accident-induced cracks or chips. Bonding also is used to protect exposed tooth roots that result from gum recession and to fill small cavities. Bonding usually lasts from three to five years.
Enamel Shaping – a process of shaping, or contouring natural teeth to improve their overall appearance. When teeth are slightly crowded or uneven, or when eye teeth appear too long, enamel shaping may be used to correct the flaw.
These treatments and others can help you have more natural-looking and attractive teeth.
Which ones could help you feel confident about your smile? Discuss with your dentist not only the options most suitable for you, but also what your expectations are and the dental fees involved.

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