There are smile design principles that influence the overall aesthetic impact of a patient’s smile. The relationship between facial aesthetics and function, types of restorations exhibit different properties & produce different effects, as well, shape and proportion can all play a part in the outcome of designing your ideal smile.
Understanding how all these principles work together are a Prosthodontists area of expertise. We will discuss your smile design goals and provide a plan for the most aesthetic outcome.
BOTOX Cosmetic® is an approved, safe prescription drug which is used both cosmetically and therapeutically. As a cosmetic treatment, it will reduce or minimize facial wrinkles in the area(s) it is applied giving you that rested, refreshed appearance. Therapeutically, Botox can reduce the intensity of clenching; a habit which leads to TMJ pain, headaches, tooth fracture and overall facial discomfort.
The treatment involves very tiny injections into the muscles under the skin in order to temporarily relax the muscles. This will prevent the muscles from fully contracting, and thus will minimize the creasing / folding / wrinkling of the skin in the treated area.
What are specialists currently using lasers for? These devices have been proven to help in the detection and treatment of oral diseases. They can be used for treating gum disease, detecting cancer, and pinpointing tooth decay in its early stages. They can precisely remove tissue, seal painful ulcerations like canker sores, and even treat small cavities. In the future, dental laser technology will undoubtedly find even more applications.
How Do Lasers Work?
Lasers take advantage of the quantum behaviour of electrons, tiny particles inside atoms. By stimulating atoms with pulses of energy, and then using a method of optical amplification, they cause the atoms to produce a beam of coherent light. Essentially, that means that they emit light which has a great deal of energy, yet can be precisely controlled. It’s the combination of high energy and precision that make lasers so useful.
Where Are Lasers Being Used?
At present, the use of lasers in dentistry falls into three general categories: disease detection, soft tissue treatments, and hard tissue treatments.
There are many ways lasers can aid in diagnosis. Laser light of specific wavelength, for example, can detect tiny pits and fissures in the biting surfaces of the tooth that a traditional dental tool can’t find. This enables a defect that’s too small to be treated at present to be carefully monitored. Lasers can also help locate dental calculus (tartar) beneath the surface of the gums, and can even aid in the detection of oral cancer in its early stages, accurately showing where healthy tissue ends and diseased tissue begins.
For the treatment of soft tissue problems, lasers have many advantages. They are minimally invasive tools that generally involve taking away less tissue than conventional methods. Used in gum surgery, for example, lasers can treat gum disease by killing harmful bacteria deep in pockets below the gum line, and removing the diseased tissue without harming the healthy tissue. They can also remove the thin layer of cells that inhibits reattachment of the gum and bone tissues to the tooth, while sealing off the adjacent blood vessels. This type of procedure generally results in less bleeding and pain.
Lasers are also effective in treating ulcers and sores on the lips or gums.
Lasers are even finding increasing use for hard-tissue procedures, like the treatment of dental caries and cavities. Not only are they more exact in the amount of material they remove, but they eliminate the noise and vibration of the dental drill, which is uncomfortable for some patients.
It’s hard to imagine anything more appealing than a sparkling, white smile. Yet our teeth rarely stay as white as we’d like them to without a little help. Fortunately, that help is available at the dental office.
Teeth whitening done in a professional dental setting is a safe, effective way to brighten your smile. It’s also perhaps the most economical cosmetic dental procedure. Depending on the whitening method you choose, results can be dramatic: in-office whitening, for example, can lighten teeth three to eight shades in a single hour.
Professionally supervised whitening will work faster, and protect sensitive gums and tooth-root surfaces better, than over-the-counter whitening products.
Professional Whitening Methods
Professional whitening makes use of high-concentration bleaching gels that are not available over the counter.
- In-Office Whitening
This technique offers the fastest results with the most powerful whitening solutions available. First, your gums and tooth-root surfaces will be covered with a protective barrier to ensure your safety. A thin plastic device known as a retractor will hold your lips and cheeks away from your teeth as a professional-strength hydrogen peroxide gel is applied. The gel will be left on for about an hour. When it is removed, the results will be obvious immediately.
- Take-Home Whitening
This is another effective way to whiten your teeth, though you will play a greater role in ensuring the best possible results and several weeks may be needed to achieve your desired level of whiteness. First, a mould of your teeth will be taken and then two thin, flexible plastic mouth trays will be custom-made for you — one for the top teeth and one for the bottom. You will fill the trays with whitening gel and then position the trays over your teeth. The trays are left in usually for about an hour at a time.
Caring for Your Whitened Smile
There are lots of things you can do to make sure your whitening results last as long as possible, and this will vary from person to person (six months to two years or even longer). First of all, please maintain your usual, conscientious routine of brushing and flossing every day, and keep up with your regular schedule of professional cleanings at the dental office. Avoid foods and beverages that stain, including red wine, tea and coffee. If you smoke, use your newly whitened teeth as an impetus to quit — a good idea in any event! A minor touch-up every so often, either at home or at the dental office, can keep your smile bright and beautiful for years.
Laser Gum Contouring & Shaping
Even if a person has straight, healthy, and symmetrical teeth, the beauty of their smile may be diminished if the gum line is uneven or falls too far below the lip line. Often referred to as a “gummy” smile, it can make the teeth look small and cause people to feel self-conscious about the appearance of their smiles.
Ideally, the gums should appear even and smooth, and should act as a frame to complement a person’s smile, rather than as a distraction from it. Fortunately, a gummy smile can now be corrected with procedures such as gum contouring.
Laser Gum Contouring & Shaping Procedure
In the past, patients who were troubled with “gummy” smiles could have the prominence of their gums reduced with a scalpel, which could cause bleeding and an uncomfortable recovery. Now, with the advent of laser dentistry, and tools such as the diode laser, patients can have their gums sculpted to perfectly accent their smiles in a fast, simple, and virtually painless procedure. Imperio offers sedation for patients who have dental fears or dental anxiety.
Laser Gum Contouring & Shaping Benefits.
Patients who have uneven gums or gums that extend to mask a significant portion of their teeth are excellent candidates for laser gum contouring. Our specialists will reshape the gum line to lengthen the teeth, reduce the amount of gum that shows when you smile, and produce a more symmetrical gum line.
What makes a smile beautiful? That’s a complex question, but some qualities of a lovely smile are immediately identifiable: good tooth colour, shape and alignment are a few of the most important ones. If your teeth could use improvement in any of these categories, porcelain veneers could be just what you’re looking for.
You may already know that a veneer is a thin covering over another surface. In dentistry, a veneer is a wafer-thin layer of super-strong porcelain that convincingly substitutes for natural tooth enamel. When bonded to your teeth, veneers can create a natural-looking, beautiful new surface. That’s because dental porcelain, like natural tooth enamel, is translucent and tough. But it doesn’t stain like tooth enamel does.
Versatility of Porcelain Veneers
Veneers can be used to improve any of the following characteristics of your teeth:
- Colour — Teeth can become stained by the foods and drinks we like, from smoking, and even normal aging. Veneers are available in numerous shades, from the most natural to the brightest Hollywood white.
- Size & Shape — Teeth can become worn down from grinding habits, or may not have the shape or size you want to begin with. For example, some people consider rounder teeth more feminine and squarer teeth more masculine. Veneers can be shaped and sized in whichever way is most flattering to your face.
- Alignment & Spacing — Veneers can be used to close small gaps between teeth or make slight corrections in alignment while improving tooth colour and shape.
Limitations of Porcelain Veneers
There are some situations in which veneers would be inappropriate. For example, if you have significantly misaligned teeth or a large gap, orthodontics might be a more appropriate solution than veneers. And if you have lost a lot of tooth structure from decay or trauma (or a particularly severe grinding habit), it might be better to restore your teeth with porcelain crowns that cover the entire tooth.
Creating a New Smile with Porcelain Veneers
The first step in creating a new smile with porcelain veneers is to communicate exactly what you don’t like about your smile as it is now. It’s a great idea to bring in pictures of smiles you do like, as a starting point for discussion. It’s possible to see how veneers would look on your teeth in one of several ways. A model of your teeth can be created over which wax “veneers” can be placed; sometimes acrylic (plastic) or tooth-coloured filling material can be placed directly onto your teeth to demonstrate the effect veneers would have on them.
Once the plan has been agreed upon, your teeth will be prepared by removing a small amount of enamel, if this step is necessary. Moulds of your teeth will be taken and used by a skilled dental laboratory to create your veneers, and you will receive a temporary set of veneers to wear during the few weeks it will take to create your permanent veneers. When the veneers come back from the lab, they will be cemented onto your teeth.
Caring for Your Veneers
Just like the teeth nature gave you, teeth restored with veneers need gentle brushing and flossing every day. This will remove dental plaque and ensure good gum tissue health around the veneers. Regular check-ups at the dental office will remain as important as always to your oral and general health. Keep in mind that as tough as veneers are, they may not be able to withstand forces that come from using your teeth as tools (to open packages, for example) or biting into very hard foods like candy apples — which isn’t good for your natural teeth, either! If you grind or clench your teeth at night, you might be advised to get a custom-made night-guard to protect your veneers — and your investment.