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Cosmetic Dentistry Q&A

by James Adkins, DDS

What is cosmetic dentistry?

Cosmetic Dentistry Image

Cosmetic dentistry is the area of dentistry that is concerned with helping patients correct aesthetic defects and enjoy their most attractive and healthiest-looking smile. Today, there are lots of cosmetic treatments to choose from, all designed to address specific cosmetic issues, including:

  • Teeth whitening for yellowed or stained teeth

  • Crowns to cover dark fillings

  • Veneers to hide gaps, cover chips and cracks, hide uneven or worn surfaces, or correct deep staining

  • Orthodontics to straighten crooked teeth

  • Gum contouring to treat teeth that appear too large or too small

Treatment plans can be customized to suit individual needs and preferences so every patient can have the smile he or she wants.

What is a smile makeover?

A smile makeover is a carefully drawn out plan that includes multiple cosmetic procedures. It may also include restorative procedures to help patients correct more substantial issues, including both cosmetic and functional concerns. Smile makeovers can be performed in stages, and each treatment plan is carefully designed for the individual patient.

Can cosmetic dentistry provide more than aesthetic benefits?

Yes, some cosmetic treatments can also provide additional oral health benefits. For instance, veneers used to hide cracks and chips can help prevent decay from occurring, while replacing a dark filling with a composite filling or covering it with a crown can help strengthen and preserve the health of the tooth.

Does dental insurance cover the cost of cosmetic dentistry?

Usually, procedures that are performed purely for cosmetic reasons are not covered by dental insurance. Some procedures that provide functional or structural benefits in addition to cosmetic enhancement may be covered at least partially. And some insurance plans offer at least partial coverage for orthodontics. If your plan doesn't provide complete coverage, we can help you find a financing plan that will enable you to fit the cost of your care into your budget.

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