Considering cosmetic dentistry? You’re not alone. In fact, 48% of Americans believe that a smile leaves the most lasting impact when meeting someone. A smile can make you appear more friendly, trustworthy, and attractive. All of which can impact how you’re perceived in social and work settings. With so much interest in improving smiles, it’s no wonder there are so many myths out there about what cosmetic dentistry can (and can’t) do. Here are some of the most common misconceptions and truths about cosmetic dentistry:
Myth: Cosmetic dentistry is not covered by insurance
Truth: While some cosmetic dental treatments are not covered by insurance, such as veneers and implants, some are also covered. The main consideration for this is the function and purpose of any changes you want for your teeth. For example, veneers not only improve the look of your smile but can also fill in gaps between teeth where cavities may develop. Meanwhile, implants not only replace any missing teeth but can also prevent the rest of your teeth from shifting and changing position. Hence, if you’re interested in cosmetic procedures, you must check with your insurance provider to see what treatments are covered under your plan.
Purpose of Procedures
Myth: All cosmetic dental treatments are elective and not necessary
Truth: While some cosmetic dental treatments are purely elective, such as teeth whitening, some procedures serve both a cosmetic and functional purpose. To illustrate, teeth whitening can remove deep-set stains that regular brushing cannot remove. Hence, it offers more aesthetic benefits compared to functional purposes. However, there’s also dental bonding, a cosmetic procedure that can be used to repair chipped or cracked teeth, especially on your front row. Beyond its cosmetic benefits, it helps restore your teeth’s function and avoid worsening any chips or cracks.
Pain During and After Procedures
Myth: Cosmetic dentistry is painful and has a long recovery time.
Truth: Your recovery time will vary widely depending on what procedure you have done and how you take care of your teeth afterward. This may include instructions such as refraining from eating food that may be too hard, cold, or hot for some time. So it’s important to pay attention to any instructions given to you by your dentist to get optimal results. That being said, when it comes to pain, most cosmetic dental procedures are now less invasive and seek to maintain your natural tooth structure as much as possible. For example, if you’re getting veneers, only a very thin layer of your tooth will be removed to make way for the veneer. This procedure is often painless. There is also the option of using anesthesia or sedation to make the process more comfortable for those with sensitive teeth or who may have a fear of dental work. Moreover, in terms of pain after the procedure, over-the-counter painkillers are often all that is needed to manage any discomfort.
Myth: Teeth whitening is bad for your teeth.
Truth: When it comes to teeth whitening, there are kits and products which allow you to do this at home. However, if they’re used incorrectly or excessively, it is possible to damage your teeth and gums. This is because these products often contain bleaching agents, such as carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide, that can be harmful if misused. That being said, teeth whitening is a safe and effective way to achieve brighter teeth when done correctly and under the supervision of a dentist. Not only can dentists recommend the most suitable approach to whitening your teeth, but they can also teach you how to better maintain your oral health.
Results or Outcome
Myth: Teeth will look fake after cosmetic procedures.
Truth: When considering a cosmetic dental procedure, dentists will evaluate your teeth’s conditions to determine your eligibility for certain cosmetic procedures. This is essential because it will significantly impact the outcome and success of your treatment towards getting a better smile. For example, suppose you’re interested in getting implants. In that case, your dentist will consider the density of your jawbone to ensure that the implants will be securely placed. When performed by a skilled dentist, cosmetic dental procedures can produce natural-looking results. Hence, you should visit your local dental clinic and consult with a professional who can help you achieve your dental goals. With today’s advanced techniques and materials, achieving the beautiful, natural-looking smile you’ve always wanted is easier than ever.
Don’t let misconceptions about cosmetic dentistry stop you from achieving the smile of your dreams! Talk to your dentist about which procedures are right for you—you may be surprised at how affordable and accessible they are.