color, size, and shape of your teeth all have a profound impact
on your appearance. While it is often the desire of people
to improve the look of their smiles, it is the goal of aesthetic
dentistry, to do this while still maintaining a "natural"
appearance of the teeth. This often requires addressing one
or all of the above-mentioned criteria. How is it that alterations
in these three characteristics enhance your smile?
of Your Teeth
color is most commonly what people see first. As you get older,
your teeth get darker. The reasons for this include normal changes
that occur within the tooth and repeated insults from environmental
conditions (coffee or tea stains, for example). Generally, then,
darker teeth are associated with older age. The easiest way that
aesthetic dentistry can correct this is by teeth bleaching. But
this alone may not entirely create a natural-looking appearance.
and Shape of Your Teeth
and shape also are major factors that define the appearance of teeth.
The most common cause of changing tooth size and shape over time
is tooth wear; and the most common cause of wear is tooth-to-tooth
contact, or grinding. Wear on the edges of the teeth can give the
appearance of aging because you do not show as much of your teeth
when you smile. Another factor that affects how much of your teeth
show when you smile is the loss of skin tone as you age. This loss
of tone causes your face to sag, thereby showing less of your upper
teeth and more of your lower teeth. The aesthetic dentistry treatment
to enable more teeth to show when you smile will depend on the cause.
If the cause is due to wear of the teeth, dental veneers or dental
crowns can be used to regain the lost length and fill out the smile.
On the other hand, this may not have a significant effect if the
cause is due to the loss of skin tone associated with age. If this
is the case, plastic surgery may be indicated as part of the treatment.
on teeth also will make the edges of the front teeth very flat.
As this occurs, the edges of the front teeth will form a straight
line rather than the more youthful appearance when the two front
teeth are slightly longer than the teeth next to them. Also, as
they wear, the proportion of length to width will be altered. Teeth
will start to appear more square in their shape rather than rectangular.
any treatment that counteracts the above-mentioned appearance changes
has the ability to enhance the appearance of your teeth and smile.
The aesthetic dentistry treatment can vary from teeth bleaching
to dental crowns or dental veneers. Depending on the severity, other
forms of treatment such as braces and gum surgery also may be indicated
to enhance the appearance and function of your teeth. It is important
to remember that all areas need to be addressed. If treatment for
teeth that are worn and dark only involves teeth bleaching, the
final result will be whiter teeth that are still worn and short.
The teeth will not appear natural, as there will be a conflict between
white teeth (youthful) and worn teeth (aged) that do not work together.
Instead, it is necessary to correct the color, size, and shape to
create a more natural appearance.