The purpose of cosmetic dentistry is to improve a person's 'smile'. General appeal can be dramatically boosted by improving the looks of the teeth. This can be done by correcting their alignment, adjusting or restoring their shape and improving their color, with an upgrade in function and comfort. The aim is to produce a beautiful and charismatic 'smile'.

The benefits are not just visual, but often greatly improve an individual's self-confidence and sense of well-being - perhaps that is why the demand for cosmetic dentistry, both in the Arabian Gulf and globally, has grown significantly in the recent years.

Different Types of Cosmetic Dentistry

There are a number of options that can result in enhancing one's smile. One can opt for a selection of one or more to suit his/her needs and desires. Here are some of the most popular procedures.

Teeth 'Whitening' or 'Bleaching' - as the name suggests, this involves removing all stains and discolorations, and can be done either by a hygienist, dentist or in some cases at home (please refer to our Teeth Whitening fact sheet).

Enamel shaping - reshaping the tooth by filling or removing enamel. Generally a pain-free procedure, enamel shaping can provide some immediate results.

Bonding - in a similar process to veneers, a tooth-colored material is 'bonded' to the tooth surface - most commonly to improve the aesthetics of a chipped, broken or badly stained tooth.

Veneers - comprise thin shells made of porcelain or composite material. Veneers are custom-made for the patient and secured to the front of the tooth. They can be applied in some conditions such as chipped, crooked or discolored teeth, or to hide gaps in-between the teeth.

Crowns - are individually-made 'caps', which cover the whole tooth after its special preparation. They are commonly made of hard materials such as porcelain. Crowns are generally resilient against everyday biting pressure and are used in a number of cases. These include covering large fillings prone to breaking, hiding gaps between teeth, or treating chipped, broken or badly shaped teeth (please refer to our Dental Crowns fact sheet).

Orthodontics - is the method used to straighten crooked or irregular teeth. Orthodontics is often used for children whose teeth are still in development, but is now increasingly popular amongst adults for aesthetic purposes (please refer to our Orthodontics fact sheet).

Implants - are permanent titanium posts used to replace teeth that have been removed or lost. Acting essentially as tooth 'roots', the posts form a base for crowns or bridges (please refer to our Dental Implants fact sheet).

Caring for Your Teeth after Cosmetic Dentistry

Your teeth require constant care in every sense, and maintaining your smile from the moment your treatment is complete is no exception. This includes brushing twice a day, flossing last thing at night and maintaining six-monthly dental check-ups. At the end of your treatment, your dentist will advise you on the best dental care regimen to suit your own individual needs.

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