teen girl smile before and after teeth whitening, close up

Cosmetic Dentistry: What is It?

More and more people are starting to realize how having a healthy smile is impactful to their self-confidence. You probably see or hear about whitening products and tools in the grocery stores, and even online! Dentists from all over the world now offer a wider variety of services, too. What exactly IS cosmetic dentistry? Can it really help you?



Cosmetic dentistry pertains to the type of dental work that improves the appearance of one’s teeth, gums, or bite. It does not necessarily improve the function, however. Note that cosmetic dentistry is not an official field of dentistry, so make sure that your cosmetic dental providers have valid dentistry certifications.



When thinking of ways to improve your smile, the first thing that might come to your mind is whitening your not-so-white teeth. Cosmetic dentistry does more than just that. It can also help fix:

*Missing teeth and gaps

*Cracked or chipped teeth

*Teeth with root canals


Cosmetic dentistry may also include several services and they are as follows:

*Teeth whitening can be done in your dentist’s office with the use of powerful products

*Enamel contouring and shaping involves a filing-like procedure that can reshape teeth

*The use of veneers, a thin layer of composite or ceramic resin tooth-colored material, can improve the size, shape, or color of your teeth

*Bonding uses tooth-colored composite resin to improve the shape of one’s tooth

*Bridges involve the attaching of natural-looking teeth replacements to both sides of a gap to close it

*Dentures involve providing patients with a removable plate with one tooth to a full set of artificial teeth

*Crowns involve bonding tooth-colored porcelain to damaged teeth to encircle or cover them

*Dental implants involve installing titanium posts into the jawbone, letting the gums heal and then attaching natural-looking crowns to the posts for a more permanent and natural solution

*Braces involve gluing a system of brackets to the teeth and tying them together with steel wires and tiny rubber bands to gently move the teeth

*Invisalign straightens the teeth more subtly with the use of clear, plastic aligner trays


These are just some of the services you can have with cosmetic dentistry and they are procedures that help enhance the appearance of your teeth as well as your smile. Some of the more involved procedures such as bridges and dental implants do more than just improve the appearance – they also improve the health and position of your teeth.