Smile like a star

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How to get the brilliant white teeth associated with smiling TV and film stars? Abraham McCarthy of EnVisage Dental Health in Larbert provides this answer.

The popularity of reality TV shows has led to a huge rise in the number of people who have become famous for being ...famous! Paris Hilton and the Kardashian family have captured the public’s imagination. This has led to millions of people scrutinising every aspect of their life, including their teeth! And those with a brilliant white smile have massively influenced the world of cosmetic dentistry in recent years.

Huge numbers of people decided they wanted that celebrity smile and they soon realised that they too can have that complete smile makeover through treatment with porcelain veneers. This is a cosmetic technique, involving very little (and sometimes no) adjustment to your teeth.

Outside of the mouth it looks like a white false nail but when bonded to enamel the veneer gives a completely new, glazed and white surface which is both strong and feels natural.

There are dozens of shades available and these range from slightly off-white (when matching to adjacent teeth) to dazzling white; often the choice for the complete makeover.

Involving the porcelain ceramist to help match the shade and translucency will normally lead to the best cosmetic results.

Cosmetic treatment introduces a feel-good factor to patients’ lives because they are happier and more confident with their smile.

A single porcelain veneer is completed within one week. Patients are fitted with temporary veneers in the interim.

Same-Day Veneers are available when a complete smile makeover is requested.

This is commonly the elected treatment in patients with dark, stained teeth which often have old fillings. It avoids the need for temporaries and ensures that patients leave the practice that day with their smile instantly revitalised. Patients who travel to a practice from afar will often request this technique.

Patients often ask for copies of their ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos which are taken routinely and provided free of charge.

Most will ask for the upper front six to eight teeth to be treated. There are more patients, however, who now request a wider smile with increasing numbers.

A full consultation will determine what the correct treatment for each patient should be.

Treatment of lower teeth with porcelain veneers is technically more demanding but it can be done if the conditions are correct.

The presence of tartar behind lower front teeth which are generally much smaller, means that more precision and care is required on the part of the dentist and ceramist.

Anaesthetic is required because a permanent roughening of the outside of the tooth takes place and you might be reducing the length of the tooth by a millimetre to make room for a new biting edge.

Porcelain veneers and implants are the two most rapidly advancing cosmetic techniques and in the last ten years both have grown exponentially.

Much of this growth has been fuelled by the development of ipads and smart phones.

The technology allows millions of people worldwide to zoom in on images of the rich and famous and look at how they present themselves to the world.

This has led to more and more people seeking perfection in their own lives. If everyone else in the room is smiling with white teeth, then for a small fee you could smile with the same confidence.