Cosmetic Dentistry

In the past decade there has been a dramatic interest in cosmetic dentistry.  We all realize that having a healthy, bright, beautiful smile enhances our appearance and allows us to smile with confidence.  Thanks to the advances in modern cosmetic dentistry, we are able to improve our teeth and smiles with quick, painless and surprisingly affordable treatments.

Cosmetic dental treatments can:

  • Change the size, shape, and alignment of certain teeth.
  • Fill in unattractive spaces between teeth.
  • Improve or correct bites.
  • Lighten or brighten the color of teeth.
  • Repair decayed, broken, cracked, or chipped teeth.
  • Replace missing teeth.
  • Replace old, unattractive dental treatments.

Remember, your smile speaks before you even say a word!

  • Empress® Restorations
  • Porcelain Veneers
  • Tooth Whitening
  • Dental Implants

Dental veneers, crowns, onlays, inlays and bridges are important restorations which enhance the health and functionality of the natural teeth.  A sparkling smile can be an enormous confidence-booster and have a dramatic effect on a person’s appearance.  Empress® has been dedicated to creating natural-looking restorations for almost two decades, and is one of the world leaders in dental ceramics.

Empress® veneers, crowns, onlays, overlays and dental bridges are renowned for their strength, durability and exceptional optical properties.  Empress® restorations are completely metal-free, and are constructed from inorganic material which is baked and cured at high temperatures.

Why should I choose Empress® restorations?

Empress® is continually refining and enhancing restorations to ensure that they look natural and restore complete functionality to the teeth.

Traditional ceramic restorations were known for being brittle and expensive to repair after sustaining damage.  However, Empress® has developed a heat-pressed glass ceramic that is immensely strong and durable.  There are several reasons for this, including the high shrinkage of leucite crystals.  This shrinkage means that compressive stress is created during the vitreous stage, thus preventing breakage and cracking.

The unique veneer glaze and stain also increases strength by as much as 50%.  These elements combined establish a thicker restoration that is fracture resistant.  Empress® crowns have a 100% chance of surviving the first three years.  This means less dental visits, less expense and a sensational, comfortable smile.

Here are some of the advantages associated with Empress® restorations:

  • Biocompatible.
  • Do not affect other dentition.
  • Ease of application.
  • Excellent polishing properties.
  • Many levels of translucency available.
  • Metal-free.
  • Natural-looking.
  • Shades match the other teeth.

What restorations can be done using Empress® products?

Empress® has created many natural-looking restorations, including:

Empress® Veneers – These veneers are wafer-thin porcelain and ceramic covers which fit permanently over natural teeth.  Empress® veneers are perfect for covering disfigured and stained teeth.  They are stain and bacteria-resistant, strong, and can be manufactured to match the natural tooth shade.

Empress® Crowns – These crowns are generally placed after root canal therapy, or after the removal of tooth decay.  Empress® crowns are proven to last longer than many types of crowns, and again, can be matched exactly to the natural tooth shade.  There is no visible ugly metal edge, just a sensational end result.

Empress® Inlays/Onlays – Inlays and onlays are currently being used to replace the traditional amalgam fillings.  Amalgam is unpleasant to view and unhealthy for the body.  Empress® ceramic inlays and overlays are strong, healthy and usually invisible to onlookers.

Empress® Bridges – As with all Empress® products, Empress® bridges are a completely natural-looking way to replace missing teeth.  Metal bridges are often highly visible and make the teeth look shorter.  Empress® bridges are almost impossible to spot, and restore symmetry and sparkle to the smile.

If you have questions about any of the Empress® restorations, please ask your dentist.

Veneers are very thin pieces of durable, tooth shaped porcelain that are custom made (for shape and color) by a professional dental laboratory.  They are bonded onto the front of teeth to create a beautiful and attractive smile.

Veneers can completely reshape your teeth and smile.  They can often be alternatives to crowns and the ideal solution in treating many dental conditions.

As with most dental restorations, veneers are not permanent and may someday need replacement.  They are very durable and will last many years, giving you a beautiful long lasting smile.

Reasons for porcelain veneers:

  • Cosmetically, to create a uniform, white, beautiful smile.
  • Crooked teeth.
  • Misshapen teeth.
  • Severely discolored or stained teeth.
  • Teeth that are too small or large.
  • Unwanted or uneven spaces.
  • Worn or chipped teeth.

What does getting porcelain veneers involve?

Getting veneers usually requires two visits to complete the process, with little or no anesthesia required during the procedure.  The teeth are prepared by lightly buffing and shaping the surface to allow for the thickness of the veneer.  A mold or impression of the teeth is taken and a shade (color) will then be chosen by you and the dentist.

On the second visit the teeth will be cleansed with special liquids to achieve a durable bond.  Bonding cement is then placed between the tooth and veneer and a special light beam is used to harden and set the bond.

You will receive care instructions for veneers.  Proper brushing, flossing and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new veneers.

Tooth whitening (or bleaching) is a simple, non-invasive dental treatment used to change the color of natural tooth enamel and is an ideal way to enhance the beauty of your smile.

Because having whiter teeth has now become the number one aesthetic concern of most patients, there are a number of ways to whiten teeth.  The most popular method is using a home tooth whitening system that will whiten teeth dramatically.  Since tooth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, it is important to evaluate replacement of any old fillings, crowns, etc.  Replacement of any restorations will be done after bleaching so they will match the newly bleached teeth.

Tooth whitening is not permanent.  A touch-up maybe needed every several years, and more often if you smoke, drink coffee, tea, or wine.

Reasons for tooth whitening:

  • Fluorosis (excessive fluoridation during tooth development).
  • Normal wear of outer tooth layer.
  • Stained teeth due to medications (tetracycline, etc.).
  • Yellow, brown stained teeth.

What does tooth whitening involve?

This type of tooth whitening usually requires two visits.  At the first appointment, impressions (molds) will be made of your teeth to fabricate custom, clear plastic, trays.

At your second appointment, you will try on the trays for proper fit, and adjustments will be made if necessary.  The trays are worn with special whitening solution either twice a day for 30 minutes or overnight for a couple of weeks depending on the degree of staining and desired level of whitening.  It is normal to experience tooth sensitivity during the time you are whitening your teeth, but it will subside shortly after you have stopped bleaching.

You will receive care instructions for your teeth and trays, and be encouraged to visit your dentist regularly to help maintain a beautiful, healthy, white smile.

Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth and also provide a fixed solution to having removable partial or complete dentures.  Implants provide excellent support and stability for these dental appliances.

Dental implants are artificial roots and teeth (usually titanium) that are surgically placed into the upper or lower jaw bone by a dentist orPeriodontist – a specialist of the gums and supporting bone.  The teeth attached to implants are very natural looking and often enhance or restore a patient’s smile!

Dental implants are very strong, stable, and durable and will last many years, but on occasion, they will have to be re-tightened or replaced due to normal wear.

Reasons for dental implants:

  • Replace one or more missing teeth without affecting adjacent teeth.
  • Resolve joint pain or bite problems caused by teeth shifting into missing tooth space.
  • Restore a patient’s confident smile.
  • Restore chewing, speech, and digestion.
  • Restore or enhance facial tissues.
  • Support a bridge or denture, making them more secure and comfortable.

What does getting dental implants involve?

The process of getting implants requires a number of visits over several months.

X-rays and impressions (molds) are taken of the jaw and teeth to determine bone, gum tissue, and spacing available for an implant.  While the area is numb, the implant will be surgically placed into the bone and allowed to heal and integrate itself onto the bone for up to six months.  Depending on the type of implant, a second surgery may be required in order to place the “post” that will hold the artificial tooth in place.  With other implants the post and anchor are already attached and placed at the same time.

After several weeks of healing the artificial teeth are made and fitted to the post portion of the anchor.  Because several fittings may be required, this step may take one to two months to complete.  After a healing period, the artificial teeth are securely attached to the implant, providing excellent stability and comfort to the patient.

You will receive care instructions when your treatment is completed.  Good oral hygiene, eating habits, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new implant.