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    July 26, 2011

    Your eyes maybe the window to your soul....


    Your eyes maybe the window to your soul but your smile is the welcoming party….Smiling is our universal language so it pays to make it the best it can be… what are your choices in modern dentistry?


    There are many ways to improve your smile with today’s dentistry. They can range from the very simple to the very complex. Every person and mouth is different and a holistic approach needs to be used to make sure that the treatment is appropriate and long lasting.

    We use many tools (photos, models, imaging software, x-rays and examinations) to help us decide what the best options are and although most people are reluctant to make that first step to visit their dentist to see what would be appropriate for them, I encourage them to do so. A consultation will allow the dentist to help you explore the options that are available to you, their appropriateness and what the end result will be. I will touch on all the options available.

    Lets start with the simplest and move through to the more complex

    1.    Re-contouring

    Sometimes just the rounding of a prominent edge or polishing up some fillings can improve the general first impression. Quick painless and easy. Time 1min to 50 mins

    2.    Professional tooth cleaning

    Having your teeth professionally cleaned will remove stains from coffee, red wine, metabolic products and of course plaque. Obviously there are other advantages for the whole health of your mouth. Time 30 to 40 mins

    3.    Bleaching

    Absolutely the most effective and fantastic way we have of improving your smile. It can be done in the surgery or with take home bleaching trays. It is a permanent change, which works by lightening the tooth from the inside. It is natural looking and quick and easy. Only natural tooth structure changes colour, fillings, veneers and crowns do not bleach.  Bleaching can also be done internally on teeth that are dark due to root canal therapy. Time: in- surgery 3 sessions 1 hour each At- home 2hours per day for up to 18 nights (depending on how white you would like them)  

    4.    Veneers

    Veneers can be used on just a single tooth or all of your front teeth. Basically they replace the front surface of the tooth. They can be made from porcelain or plastic composite material. Composite veneers can be placed in one appointment. Porcelain veneers are a two-appointment procedure. Porcelain veneers last longer, are stronger and more changes to the contours and length of the teeth can be made with them. There is a lot of talk of ‘no drilling veneers’ but except in the most unusual circumstances some changes to the tooth needs to occur. Think about it. To change the colour and shape space is required otherwise your veneers will feel more prominent and feel like they are sticking out.

    5.    Crowns (caps)

    Are mostly used when the tooth has a large filling and is weak and in these cases they can also be used to improve the appearance of the teeth. They can have a gold core with porcelain over the top or be all porcelain, which gives a beautiful aesthetic result. They can change shape, colour, alignment and length. They are also a two-appointment procedure.

    6.    Orthodontics

    Orthodontics involves the movement of teeth into the correct position in relation to your bite, the surrounding teeth and your smile. It can give fantastic results. It does take time and will correct alignment but not contour or colour. The older you are the slower the movement of the teeth is. Invisalign involves the use of clear hard plastic rays over your teeth which move the teeth gradually in to their correct position. Not all cases can be treated with Invisalign. Orthodontics can take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years.

    7.    Snap-on smile

    Although this technique seems promising it does have limitations. It works by making a plastic cover that goes over your teeth that you can push in and pull off. So imagine your teeth with another 2mm over the top… it can work in limited cases but has a very limited life and cannot be worn continuously. They often break and tend to look false even in the best of cases.


    Please don’t hesitate to contact me at advice@dentalcareproducts.com.au or at my clinic Mdt dental in Neutral Bay 9908 3466  or see your local dentist to see what will be right for you.

    Dr Caroline Downing J

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