The goal in creating cosmetic dental restorations is to simulate, or improve, the appearance of the natural dentition. Successful cosmetic dentistry results must perfectly integrate with the whole of the face, not just with the surrounding teeth.
Cosmetic Dentistry at Chevy Chase Digital Dentistry
The cosmetic dental exam and design process is the key to long-term success. The artistry of digital protocols allows us to design, image, and develop the smile before any irreversible care begins. This is a team effort between dentist and patient to assure that you get the beautiful smile of your dreams. We offer cosmetic and restorative services to meet your dental treatment needs.
Services may include:
- Teeth whitening
- Smile makeovers
- Tooth bonding
- Dental veneers
- Dental crowns
- Minor clear retainer tooth movement
- Cosmetic Implant-supported restorations
As we age, our enamel may thin, leaving the layer of the tooth called dentin exposed. Dentin is naturally yellow in color and causes a yellow-tint on the teeth. Consuming highly acidic food and beverages can speed up staining on the surface of the teeth.
Chevy Chase Digital Dentistry offers at-home teeth whitening. Our professional at-home teeth whitening system requires custom-made trays to fit perfectly over your teeth and uses professional quality whitening gel. In one to two weeks, you will see results. Unlike over-the-counter teeth whitening options, professional at-home systems whiten all of your teeth and provide maximum comfort with minimal tooth sensitivity and gum irritation.
Minor Clear Retainer Tooth Movement
The most common way to correct crooked teeth is through orthodontic treatment or the use of braces. While traditional orthodontic treatment calls for metal braces, many patients today elect to use clear aligners to straighten their smile. Clear, near-invisible retainers and aligners have revolutionized orthodontic treatment options. They achieve the same results as traditional braces without many of the downsides. Clear aligners move the teeth in small increments like metal braces. However, they can also complete minor cosmetic corrections in a matter of months.
In addition to cosmetic gains, orthodontic movement can help create a stable, even, and comfortable bite. Our office uses your digital mouth scans to create retainers that will gradually move your teeth to a straight position. For more involved orthodontic needs, we work as a team with some of the area’s best orthodontists.
Most patients want to avoid wearing braces altogether. However, there may be certain conditions where straightening teeth without braces is not likely. In these cases, alternative procedures can effectively straighten teeth without braces. Common treatments for straightening teeth without braces include:
- Porcelain veneers cover the front and sides of teeth and can correct minor problems in tooth alignment.
- Cosmetic bonding is a treatment that uses tooth-colored composite material to improve the look of crooked teeth and close gaps between teeth.
- Dental implants are for replacing lost teeth. However, they can help someone with crooked teeth who needs to remove teeth to correct major alignment problems.
Using today’s biocompatible tooth-colored materials, we are able to use bonding to fix many dental health issues, such as:
- Fill dental cavities
- Repair chips and cracks
- Close gaps between teeth
- Repair worn-down teeth
- Fix misshapen teeth
- Make teeth appear longer
- Improve the look of stained teeth
Bonding can serve as an economical option or a transition to porcelain veneers or crowns. Patients can usually receive dental bonding in just one visit.
We can correct chips, gaps, stains, and a host of additional cosmetic concerns with veneers. Veneers work by covering the front part of your tooth with an ultra-thin layer of ceramic material. We can match the existing shades of your teeth or work with you to choose a new shade for a more dazzling smile.
Case planning is critical for porcelain veneers. Choosing an experienced cosmetic dentist ensures the best results and long-term wear. Dr. Cobb and Dr. Cima take a very conservative approach to porcelain veneers. This means they do their best to save as much of the real tooth structure as possible.
Severely worn and damaged teeth are at risk of further damage and loss. A crown is like putting new enamel on the entire tooth surface. A crown is a protective covering that permanently sits on top of a broken tooth. The crown provides benefits that restore function, prevent further damage, provide additional strength, and improve the look of severely warped and stained teeth.
Our office spends a large amount of time planning each crown to ensure proper placement and the best results. Many materials are available and selected based on strength and cosmetic concerns.
Cosmetic Implant Restorations
Missing teeth can be enough to ruin self-confidence, leaving us less inclined to smile and show off our bright side. It can take a toll on physical health too. Missing teeth make eating difficult and also pave the way for issues like jaw bone loss, misalignment, and gum disease. Over-crowding is also an issue when remaining teeth move into the empty gaps.
Dental implants are by far the most modern option for missing teeth. A dental implant will restore both the look and function of the original tooth. In fact, dental implants from our expert implantology team are so life-like, that even you will find it hard to tell the difference.
When more extensive problems are present, we will need a different corrective pathway to find the best and most conservative choice. We follow a thorough 4-step approach.
1. Comprehensive Evaluation
Dr. Cobb or Dr. Cima will carefully assess the teeth, gums, mouth, jaw joints, and muscles. They will look for signs of decay, stress, or instability. Many of a patient’s cosmetic dental concerns are from functional abnormalities. Because of this, it’s important to correct any health or functional problems prior to making cosmetic improvements. This will ensure that there is no recurrence of either the cosmetic or functional concerns.
2. Solution Planning
The 3Shape design software allows Dr. Cobb and Cima to design solutions with immense efficiency and precision. Using 2D and 3D schematics, patients are able to view proposed corrective actions and results before we start any irreversible treatment.
Our approach to designing solution plans in more complex cases relies on two rules from Dr. Peter Dawson, a mentor, colleague, and dear friend of Dr. Cobb’s:
Rule 1: We always seek to solve the problems with the least amount of dentistry.
Rule 2: “WIDIOM”— Would I Do It On Me?
3. Tooth Shaping and Prototypes
3D printing models provide a road map for tooth shaping and prototypes, improving accuracy and reducing invasiveness. We frequently print prototypes ahead of time to supply a precise forecast of results.
Traditionally, dentists use the term “temporaries” for these interim restorations. Prototypes more accurately portray the final result. They allow for a “test drive” to confirm that planned treatments achieve cosmetic and restorative dental goals. This level of detail in dental care ensures functionally comfortable results.
4. Final Restorations
A state-of-the-art dental laboratory will produce the permanent restorative elements we use for the final cosmetic procedures. Such as crowns, porcelain veneers, and dental bridges. We team up with some of the country’s top dental labs and ceramists. Exact specifications using 2-D and 3-D modeling provide the lab with everything they need to achieve the best possible result.
Because of this comprehensive design process, the application of the final restoration is not a guess. It is a predictable and dependable result that feels comfortable, looks natural, and functions well. Schedule an appointment today to restore your teeth at Chevy Chase Digital Dentistry.