Undergoing a smile makeover is not a decision anyone makes lightly. Anything that changes your appearance requires important consideration and research. Cosmetic dentistry can make drastic and wonderful changes to your face and smile. Here are some important questions you should ask your dentist if you are considering a smile makeover.
The most important aspect of achieving the smile of your dreams is clearly communicating your smile goals. We never take guesses at what another person wants his or her smile to look like. If you do not know exactly what your smile goals are, we can help you articulate it through photos and questions.
Once we have thoroughly discussed and clarified your goals, you need to understand the different cosmetic dentistry options you have to meet those goals. For some, these options may include minimally invasive procedures like teeth straightening and teeth whitening. For others, it may include rehabilitation of the entire mouth. You need to know your options!
Dentists have a clear understanding of the long-term effects and maintenance requirements of each cosmetic dentistry treatment option. After you have understood the various options available to you, ask your dentist which one he or she would choose. What are the pros and cons of each, and why did your dentist pick that option? Why did he or she not choose a different option?
This question will bring up additional questions that will help you better understand each option with which your dentist presents you. When you ask your dentist to put him- or herself in your shoes and choose an option, knowing what he knows, you will gain a clearer picture of what to expect out of each.
Long-term outcomes are important in all realms of dentistry. Both you and your dentist want cosmetic dentistry that lasts for many years. The success rate of each treatment option depends on a variety of factors, only one of which is the quality of dentistry performed.
Through a comprehensive evaluation of your mouth, your dentist will identify any potential risk factors affecting the prognosis of any dental treatments. By understanding your unique areas of risk, your dentist can make a better prediction of the outcome of a variety of treatment options.
One unfortunate misconception many people have when contemplating cosmetic dentistry is that once their treatment is complete, they are “done”. We cannot emphasize this strongly enough: All dental work requires maintenance!
Orthodontic treatment, like Invisalign, requires patients to wear a retainer to maintain proper tooth position. Teeth whitening requires follow-up maintenance to keep the teeth bright white. Dental treatments like porcelain veneers and cosmetic composite bonding require protection from heavy clenching or grinding forces. These patients must wear mouthguards while they sleep to prevent chipping, breaking, and debonding.
If you want your beautiful smile to stay beautiful, you must work to maintain it. Ask your dentist what specific tasks will be involved in the maintenance of each cosmetic option.
Dentists who perform successful cosmetic dental treatments typically have portfolios showing their work. Before and after photos can give you a better understanding of your dentist’s ability to produce the smile you want than a conversation ever can.
Ask your dentist to show you cases where the before looks similar to your pre-treatment state. Which option did this patient choose, and what was the final result? How is that patient faring now, and how long has it been? The answers to these questions can help you decide if this treatment option is the right choice for you.
Call Rockland Dental Specialists. Our experts can answer any questions you have about cosmetic dentistry and smile makeovers. We love helping our patients achieve and maintain the smiles of their dreams for decades. Call us at (845) 259-2500 or complete our online contact form today!