Using advanced cosmetic dental treatments and materials, Dr. Kelli Slate at her dental office in Lakewood, Dallas TX, can make a real difference to your look and smile.
Remember, cosmetic dentistry can improve your smile – helping you to project an image of self-confidence and high personal esteem. When you feel good about yourself, it shows in your appearance.
Here are 4 typical cosmetic treatments that her dental office in Lakewood offers:
- Repairing Chipped Teeth: The practice of dental bonding is an alternative to veneers. It is used as a restorative procedure for repairing chips, cracks, discoloration or misarranged teeth.
- How does dental bonding work? Preparing a tooth for bonding requires gently etching the tooth’s surface and applying a special bonding liquid. After the liquid sets, a resin made of plastic is applied and manipulated or sculpted into the required shape. When the resin becomes hard it is smoothed down and polished to give a natural appearance.
- Some Considerations: The bonding procedure can often be finished in a single appointment and can significantly improve the look of a tooth. However, as the plastic resin being applied is not as tough as natural tooth enamel, there is a greater chance that it will stain, chip or even break. A good dental bond will normally last three to five years or longer before requiring any repair.
What are porcelain veneers? These are thin shells of medically fabricated ceramic which cover the front surfaces of the teeth. They are sometimes called porcelain laminates. They are a great esthetic choice for getting your smile back. They have become popular due to the simplicity of the treatment and their versatility.
Veneers require a high degree of dental skill and likewise an attention to cosmetic detail from your dentist. Dr Kelli Slate routinely provides veneers for patients with each case being customized to enhance and match their smile.
- Will they resemble normal teeth? Porcelain veneers are wafer-thin and virtually undetectable to the eye. They are resistant to staining caused by coffee, tea, or even cigarettes. For strength, durability and appearance, they perform very well. This type of dental laminate looks like healthy, white tooth enamel and is usually the best out of all restorative choices.
How robust and durable are porcelain veneers? With the recommended care, veneers made from porcelain will provide you with a great smile for more than a decade and often longer.
Dr. Slate will ensure that your veneers are made from the best quality porcelain and bonded with the most advanced and proven materials.
Avoiding the use of your veneers as tools to open and cut things will increase their lifespan. However, if minor accidental damage occurs, it is normally possible to only replace the veneer itself.
Inlays & Onlays
What are inlays and onlays? These can be made of porcelain, resin composite or gold. These pieces of material are bonded to the tooth where damage has occurred. Inlays are similar to fillings. They are applied inside the ‘cusp tips’ of a tooth. However, reconstruction using onlays is more substantial as they extend out to cover one or more of the cusps of a tooth.
Gold has been the material of choice for inlays and onlays over the years but more recently porcelain has become more popular (i.e its natural color helps to match natural teeth).
How are inlays and onlays applied? The procedure requires 2 visits to your dental office. During the initial visit, the filling being replaced or the damaged part of the tooth is removed. The tooth is then prepared for the inlay or onlay. To ensure there is a good fit and a normal bite, an impression of the tooth is made and sent to a laboratory for fabrication of the piece. A temporary sealant will then be applied to the tooth to protect it and the second appointment will continue the treatment.
At the 2nd appointment, the temporary sealant is taken off and the inlay or onlay placed to make sure it perfectly fits. Finally, the inlay or onlay will be dentally bonded to the damaged tooth and polished smooth.
- Considerations for inlays and onlays: Traditional fillings can considerably alter the strength of a natural tooth and cause it to weaken. However, as a great alternative, inlays and onlays can increase the strength and robustness of a tooth by up to 75 percent. This type of restorative treatment can last a good 10 to 30 years. In certain situations, if an entire crown isn’t needed, inlays and onlays can offer a very good alternative.
- What is Invisalign? Translucent braces made by Invisalign use a series of clear removable aligners to straighten your teeth without metal wires or brackets – https://www.invisalign.com.
- How are they made? The aligners are made through a combination of Dr. Slate’s expertise and 3-D computer imaging technology. Each set of aligners are worn for about 2 weeks. They can be easily removed for eating, drinking and when you clean your teeth.
- What happens? As each aligner is replaced with the next in the series, your teeth will start to move into the correct straightened position. This is a slow process and happens little by little over a number of weeks.
- How often will I need to visit the office? You’ll visit Dr. Slate about once every 6 weeks to make sure that your Invisalign treatment is working as planned.
- How long before my teeth become straight? Total treatment time varies from patient to patient. Averages for Invisalign treatment is somewhere from 9 to 15 months.