Find a dentist downtown to help your professional and personal appearance.

Whether you’re a lawyer, an editor, or an IT technician, you might not realize how much a bright, confident smile can help you reach your goals. The truth is a confident smile impacts the way others perceive you. More importantly, it impacts the way you perceive and carry yourself. Delivering your ideas with a confident smile can impact the way they’re perceived, helping them sound more creative or knowledgeable. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways cosmetic dentistry can improve your smile. You will love your new confidence to unleash genuine smiles—in both your private and professional life.

Here are 5 ways cosmetic dentistry can transform your smile.

1. Tooth-Colored Fillings

While getting a cavity is never ideal, tooth-colored fillings help you to get a filling that looks natural. Your dentist will match this durable composite material to the color of your teeth so they’ll blend in with your natural teeth perfectly. This is a vast improvement over metal fillings, which are incredibly visible, even when they’re placed in the back of the mouth. The appearance of tooth-colored fillings isn’t their only benefit. The material is actually better for your teeth. Metal fillings are prone to expanding and contracting with temperature changes, which runs the risk of cracking your tooth.

Additionally, tooth-colored fillings require less healthy tooth structure to be drilled away than metal fillings do. The less tooth material removed, the better it is for the long-term health of your teeth. The biggest downside to tooth-colored fillings is that they aren’t as durable as metal fillings. Metal fillings can last 10 to 15 years, depending on how well you care for them. Tooth-colored fillings usually only last about seven years. If you practice a great oral hygiene routine, they may last for longer.

2. Teeth Whitening

Your diet, habits like drinking coffee or smoking, and aging can stain your teeth over time. Over-the-counter whitening strips can provide a little whitening, but they aren’t as strong as professional treatments. They don’t always whiten your teeth evenly. They may also irritate your gums or cause tooth sensitivity if you don’t follow the directions closely.

Professional whitening treatments whiten all of your teeth evenly and safely without irritating your gums. This is due to special whitening trays that are made specifically for you. You can complete a professional whitening treatment in a single appointment at our office near Millennium Park. You may also whiten your teeth at home by taking a custom tray home and wearing it to sleep each night for two weeks. These professional treatments are capable of getting your teeth many times whiter than over-the-counter products can. The superior results make it worth it for many patients!

3. Veneers

Dental veneers are a versatile cosmetic dentistry treatment that can resolve a wide range of dental issues. They can cover stains that whitening treatments can’t erase, restore chipped, cracked, or broken teeth, and cover teeth that are oddly shaped or slightly crooked. Veneers can also cover the gap between teeth or transform a tooth’s shape, color, and appearance. Veneers can easily adapt to fit your needs; they  can be applied to an individual tooth or to your entire smile. Additionally, each of your veneers will be custom-made for you. You and Dr. Barr or Dr. Diachenko will work to choose the color, shade, and shape of your veneers. When your new smile is complete, no one will know you have veneers!

In general, getting your veneers will take two or three appointments over the course of several weeks because they’re created in an outside lab. The porcelain they’re made from is durable and stain-resistant. This ensures that they’ll stand up to everyday wear and tear for around 15 years if you practice great oral hygiene. When you’re looking into this treatment, however, it’s important to note that veneers are permanent. The placement process requires Dr. Barr or Dr. Diachenko to remove a small amount of enamel from the surface of your teeth. If your veneers wear out, they’ll need to be replaced with new ones.

4. Bonding

If you’re looking for a faster or less expensive cosmetic dentistry treatment than veneers, dental bonding might be right for you. This treatment isn’t as versatile or long-lasting as veneers, but it can still treat a good portion of the issues veneers can. This includes covering stains that whitening can’t remove, closing gaps in your smile, restoring chipped or cracked teeth, and making minor changes to the shape of your teeth. Bonding is made from a tooth-colored resin that is tinted and buffed to match the color and gloss of your natural teeth. When complete, it’s indistinguishable from the surface of your natural teeth.

The length of the dental bonding procedure varies based on what you’re having done. Generally it takes a single office visit since each tooth can be completed in as little as 30 minutes. While dental bonding is relatively strong, it is prone to staining. You will need to be careful about what foods and drinks you consume on a regular basis. Maintaining a great oral hygiene routine is also important. With good care, dental bonding can last up to 10 years, though it will last as little as three years if it isn’t cared for properly. Unlike veneers, dental bonding can be removed without reapplying it, so it’s a reversible treatment if you decide you don’t like the results.

5. Porcelain Crowns

When a tooth is severely damaged by decay or injury, porcelain crowns are often the best way to save its remaining structure. This procedure is healthier and generally much less expensive than losing your tooth. Crowns are also frequently used to restore the function and appearance of teeth that have been worn down or are crooked or oddly shaped. They’re designed specifically for you using a laser scan of your mouth. You will also be able to give your input about the size, shape, and shade of the final tooth-shaped cap, so you can be sure you’ll love your restored smile.

In many cases, porcelain crowns can take two or three appointments over the course of several weeks to place because they need to be milled in an outside lab; in some cases, however, we are able to use cutting-edge technology to design, mill, and place your new crown in just a single appointment! Whether you get a traditional or same day crown, the porcelain material is durable and stain-resistant, so it blends into your smile perfectly. With great oral hygiene, a crown can last around 15 years before it needs to be replaced.

Loving your smile isn’t impossible; cosmetic dentistry can help you love your smile and gain a confidence in it. The results will benefit you for years to come in both your personal and professional life. If you’re looking for a dental office that can help you achieve this close to where you work in downtown Chicago or near Millennium Park, you can call our office and schedule an appointment at any time.