Quality Dental Care in the Exton Area

Cosmetic Dentistry: Options to Change Your Smile Without Braces

There are a few cosmetic dentistry treatments that can be used to improve the alignment of a person's teeth. Some of these treatments even give patients faster results than traditional metal braces.

Braces have been the standard way to straighten teeth for nearly a century, but a large number of people would rather avoid them if possible. Braces consist of metal brackets and wires that take over the appearance of the patient's teeth. All people see when the person smiles is a bunch of metal stuck on their teeth.

This has led to some people not getting the treatments they need due to not wanting to deal with a mouthful of metal for up to two years. Unfortunately, this leads to the orthodontic issues they are dealing with getting worse, which increases their risk of tooth decay and gum disease since poorly-aligned teeth are harder to clean. Fortunately, people who would rather not have to deal with braces now have a few other options.

How cosmetic dentistry can improve smiles without braces

Here are some ways a dentist might decide to deal with poorly-aligned teeth without using braces:

Clear aligners

Clear aligners are one of the popular ways cosmetic dentists straighten teeth. It involves using transparent aligner trays to gradually push the patient's teeth towards a better alignment over time. The patient gets a series of trays at the start of their treatment and each tray further down the series pushes the patient's teeth closer to the target alignment. Each tray is worn for two weeks before being swapped with another that pushes the person's teeth closer to the desired position.

Clear aligners are made from clear plastics that are virtually impossible to notice when worn. They offer more precise teeth alignment than braces and treatment times can be as little as a year.

Veneers

Veneers can also be used to treat minor alignment issues like crooked teeth and spaces between teeth. These are tooth-shaped restorations that are used to cover the front part of a tooth and any flaws on its surface. It is one of the fastest ways to drastically improve the appearance of a person's teeth and it can be completed in a couple of weeks.

The installation of veneers typically requires the removal of enamel to prevent the veneers from making the patient's teeth appear bulky. This is a permanent alteration which leads to a need to always have some restoration protecting the front of any teeth treated with them. There are special types of veneers called "no-prep" veneers which do not require the removal of any enamel.

Dentists typically recommend veneers for teeth straightening when patients have other aesthetic issues that can be fixed with veneers in addition to their orthodontic issues.

Ready to get a straighter smile?

Thanks to veneers and clear aligners, you do not need to wear braces to have a straighter smile. Call or visit our Exton clinic to learn more about the process.

Request an appointment: Here or call Integrated Dental Care at (610) 600-9745 for an appointment in our Exton office.

Reasons to Correct the Fit of Your Dentures

Widespread tooth loss can occur due to severe gum disease, tooth decay, or mouth trauma, but dentures are one option available to patients to replace some or all the teeth. When receiving a full set, the teeth are removed from the mouth and a whole arch of prosthetic teeth is attached to an acrylic base made to fit over the gums. While a new set of denture teeth should last several years, natural changes to the mouth can cause the prosthetic to fit improperly. If patients notice this problem, they should contact their dentist for an adjustment.

How to tell if dentures need to be corrected

It is normal to experience minor discomfort when first getting used to a new set of denture teeth. However, if a problem develops later on, shrinking gums and shifting teeth may be to blame. There are several signs to look out for that often indicate a readjustment is needed:

  • Gum pain and irritation
  • Bleeding
  • Eating, chewing, and swallowing problems
  • Moving or slipping dentures
  • Speaking difficulties
  • Facial changes
  • Sores on the gums or other places of the mouth
  • Staining and foul odors

Why getting dentures fixed is important

Ill-fitting dentures can cause individuals significant discomfort and even lead to long-term issues if not addressed in a timely manner. Over time, loose dentures that rub against the gum cause persistent inflammation, which can lead to painful sores in the mouth and a condition called stomatitis. While canker sores or ulcers can be treated at home or by a medical professional, further irritation can lead to an infection or even put a person at risk of oral cancer.

Prevention

Scheduling regular checkups can help patients avoid the pain of wearing a dental prosthetic that does not fit correctly, and proper maintenance can extend the life of the piece. It is recommended that patients with a denture visit a dental office at least once a year. This allows the dentist to evaluate the fit of the dentures and check for any other issues that may be present. A complete replacement is often necessary after five to 10 years, depending on how rapidly the jawbone deteriorates and what the overall condition of the prosthetic is.

Treatment

Once a dentist has confirmed that a patient’s denture is not fitting as it should, the dentist can perform a reline, a process that involves removing some of the existing base material and taking an impression with putty. This impression is sent to a dental lab along with the existing denture. Depending on the type of reline, acrylic or a softer material replaces the putty. For patients with a full denture set, this procedure is recommended every two years.

Conclusion

While dentures are useful for allowing a person with missing teeth to eat and speak more comfortably, it is essential that the prosthetic fits the mouth correctly to avoid unnecessary pain and other more serious issues. Have your denture readjusted and replaced when necessary to maintain normal functioning and keep your mouth healthy.

Request an appointment: Here or call Integrated Dental Care at (610) 600-9745 for an appointment in our Exton office.

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