In the past few years, have you seen any trends or updates in cosmetic dentistry?
Since the beginning of the pandemic, more and more people have been using video calls. They’re on Zoom all the time, sometimes for the entire workday. As a result of being on video, people are often staring at their faces even if they’re trying not to. Having to look at yourself frequently can bring up a lot of insecurities.
Due to this, there have been quite a few trends, not only in cosmetic dentistry but in all cosmetic procedures. There’s been an increase in smile makeovers with crowns and veneers as well as plastic surgery procedures such as skin fillers and Botox.
How has technology improved in the field of cosmetic dentistry?
One of the main things we use is digital scanning to make crowns, bridges, and veneers. It can be used to plan cases before they’re even done. Planning out a procedure and being able to visualize it on the computer has been tremendously helpful. Not only can a patient understand what the procedure will entail, but they can get a strong understanding of what the end result will look like. This scanning technology, as well as digital x-rays, make the planning process easier for every single case. Complicated cases involving crowns, bridges, veneers, or implants are now significantly easier as we have a strong understanding of the situation before we even begin.
Have the materials improved alongside the technology?
More and more, dentistry is moving away from metals. Most procedures now use different types of porcelains. These porcelains have become stronger, harder, and more life-like in recent years, making them a far better choice than metal. These updates in materials have improved cosmetic dentistry immensely; we are lightyears ahead of where we were 10 years ago.
What is the typical timeline for cosmetic dental work?
In simple cases using composite resins, cosmetic enhancements can be completed in just one visit. When the procedure involves porcelains, it will often take two or more visits, depending on the complexity of the case. In general, cosmetic procedures are incredibly quick, mostly due to the improvements in technology that I mentioned before.
In addition to their physical appearance, how can cosmetic dentistry improve someone’s overall health?
Many people seek out cosmetic enhancements because they are unhappy with their appearance. Insecurities and lack of confidence can significantly impact your day-to-day life, and the ability to smile can turn that all around. If you are working remotely and have to look at your face on camera all day, you want to be happy with what you see. Long-term mental health and confidence can be greatly improved when you have a smile you are proud of and happy to show off.
Can you think of an example of a cosmetic dentistry success story?
Absolutely. Several years ago I had a young woman come into my practice who had suffered from an eating disorder in her younger years, which had damaged many of her teeth. Acid from the stomach destroys the enamel, shortens teeth, and causes them to break more easily. After we had discussed her situation, I was able to restore that woman’s smile in just a couple of visits. We managed to get everything done in time for her wedding and she was overjoyed. It was incredible to see the wedding photographs; she looked absolutely beautiful and her smile was glowing. A cosmetic dental procedure allowed her to enjoy her special day and left her with photographs that she can be happy to look back at for years to come.
If you are interested in cosmetic dental enhancements, or simply have questions about the process, contact Lipkowitz Dental Associates today!