Your smile is one of the first things that people see about you and unfortunately, many people don’t like the way their teeth look. Because of this, many people either avoid smiling or have learned to smile in a way that hides their teeth. Complaints most often mentioned include the teeth being too dark, too short, crowded or displaying too much gum tissue. Whatever it is that you don’t like, there is almost always a solution. Smile design is technically demanding and has required considerable dedication to advanced training, but it is one of the most rewarding services that we offer.
Smile design is the greatest intersection between art and science in dentistry. We listen to your concerns and what you would like to achieve. We look at tooth size and shape, lip mobility, the amount of display and contour of the gum tissue, shade and tone of the teeth, facial type, as well as lip shape and symmetry in order to come up with an aesthetic solution that you will be happy with. We look at solutions once we know what our goal is. Often these solutions include straightening the teeth with Invisalign®, whitening the teeth, veneers or crowns, gingival recontouring, or direct composite bonding.
Veneers are thin shells of ceramic that are bonded to the teeth. Depending on the desired outcome, in some cases it is possible to do 'no-prep' veneers such as Lumineers®. Lumineers® are used when the teeth do not require shaping prior to the fabrication of the veneer. However, in most cases, achieving an aesthetic result requires that the teeth undergo minor shaping of less than a millimeter.
Veneers are a convenient way to improve both appearance and strength. Veneers can be used to improve the colour and shape of the teeth, fill in spaces between teeth, strengthen chipped or cracked teeth, correct minor crowding or hide stained and malformed teeth. Veneers can make an incredible improvement in the appearance of a person’s smile.
Crowns, sometimes referred to as caps, are ceramic shells that are designed to fully cover a tooth. The difference between a crown and a veneer is that a veneer only covers the front and biting surface of a tooth, whereas a crown covers the front, sides, back and biting surface of a tooth. Crowns strengthen and protect the remaining tooth structure and improve the appearance of teeth. Crowns are employed in smile design if the desired result cannot be reached with veneers or direct composite bonding.
Invisalign® and Suresmile are systems of moving teeth and shaping the arch for functional and aesthetic reasons without using traditional braces. A movement sequence is designed digitally for the teeth to achieve the desired result. Instead of brackets and wires that are used for braces, a clear plastic appliance is worn over the teeth to provide gentle pressure. The plastic tray is replaced every two weeks with the next tray in the sequence, gradually working toward the final result. The total duration of treatment is usually 12 to 18 months. What people like the most about Invisalign® and Suresmile is that they escape the look of traditional braces. The appliances are much less noticeable and the treatment is considerably less expensive than traditional braces. Invisalign is the most popular of the companies that offer this service. However, in many cases, we will use Suresmile which allows us to send 3D imaging of the tooth roots and bone as well as the teeth to the design team. This allows us to ensure that the roots are placed appropriately at the end of treatment.