Cosmetic Dentistry

Patients can now correct minor cosmetic issues, including tooth discoloration, crooked teeth and gaps, with veneers and bonding.

Veneers

Veneers are thin, semi-translucent "shells" typically attached to your front teeth. Veneers are customized from porcelain material and permanently bonded to your teeth. Drs. Lang & Millward remove a small amount of the tooth surface (about the thickness of a fingernail) to create room for the veneer to be attached. These long-lasting restorations are perfect for making subtle changes to your smile, and they won't discolor like your natural teeth.


Bonding

Bonding can also correct these minor cosmetic issues. Unlike veneers, bonding removes little, if any, of the original tooth. Bonding can be completed in a short amount of time and is relatively inexpensive. The bonding material comes in many different shades, providing better matching of shades to the natural color of your teeth. However, bonding is not right for more extreme situations. They are not as durable and long lasting as veneers and may need to be retouched or replaced in the future.

Call Drs. Lang & Millward to see which one of these restorative techniques is right for you!


Tooth Whitening

Everyone wants a brighter, whiter, smile! Over time, age, dark beverages, and food can discolor your teeth, leaving you with a dull, yellow smile. Today there are options that can help you achieve a megawatt smile in almost no time!

  • Over-the-counter bleaching products have some of the same ingredients as the products your dentist offers. However, these products are not allowed by the Food and Drug Administration to contain the same levels of active ingredient as those administered by licensed professionals. Also, the methods of applying these solutions to your teeth (strips, make-at-home molds, trays) usually don't fit or adhere properly to the teeth, causing uneven or insignificant bleaching to occur.
  • Professionally prescribed whitening offered by your dentist. These products typically require you to have impressions made at the dentist's office, and then return for custom fitted trays made from these impressions. At home or work, you can wear these trays filled with a peroxide gel, as they are nearly invisible when they are in place. Optimal results are usually achieved in 1-2 weeks. The benefit of this kind of system is that you can purchase refill gel whenever you need, allowing you to keep your smile fresh and bright. Opalescence Tooth Whitening Systems.
  • Professionally applied. Over four million smiles are whiter, brighter and more confident thanks to Philips Zoom, the #1 patient-requested professional teeth whitening brand. Philips Zoom is a scientifically advanced teeth whitening procedure applied chairside at your dentist’s office. It’s ideal for anyone looking for immediate results, and now with the most advanced LED whitening technology from Philips, the results are even better than ever.

People often want to know if tooth whitening can harm them in any way. We tell them that with proper use, whitening treatments have shown no adverse effects on teeth, gums, or dental work (like crowns or fillings.) However, you may experience some increased sensitivity to heat or cold following treatment. This sensitivity usually lasts no more than a few days after treatment and can be easily alleviated. Ask your dentist for options if the sensitivity hasn't disappeared quickly, or is bothersome to you. If you experience irritation of the gums near the treated teeth check:

  • Over filled trays cause gel to be pushed out and sit on your gum tissue. Try using the least amount possible to make the trays adhere to teeth.
  • Excessive wear of the trays can cause irritation. Ask your dentist what the recommended wear schedule is.
  • Ill-fitting trays can cause gel to be deposited on the gums, causing irritation. Make sure your trays fit snugly, and ask your dentist to check the fit if irritation continues.

Even if you experience a little sensitivity, don't worry! Tooth-whitening gels have no adverse effect and often improve the health of your gums.


Tooth-Colored Restorations

Silver amalgam used to be the norm when it came to materials for restorations, such as fillings. However, silver fillings do not have much aesthetic appeal to the patient and can even cause damage to your tooth years down the road. The amalgam can break down the tooth, causing a fracture and the need for a crown to salvage the tooth.

After much research, some new tooth-colored materials have been developed that are stronger, longer lasting and more aesthetically pleasing to our patients. Composed of porcelain and composite resin, these new tooth-colored restorations bond directly to the tooth, strengthening it by restoring most of its original shape. The restorations can even be custom-colored to match your teeth to help give you the most natural-looking smile possible.

These new restorations require less removal of your healthy tooth structure to place than those with amalgams and especially with new cavities. Dramatically smaller holes are needed with a tooth-colored restoration. They are also healthier because no traces of mercury are used, unlike silver amalgams.

Ask Drs. Lang & Millward about our new tooth-colored materials and how we can restore your smile!