Experts Talk Dental Aesthetics
A good retirement should be filled with great smiles, and great smiles need good teeth. In an age of pictures and digital media, you will find that your photo is being taken more and more often. If you are not confident about your smile, then you may feel a drop in confidence or feel as if you do not wish to join in with family and friends as much. We spoke to two leading dental specialists, Dr Franck Page and Professor Vasilios Chronopoulos of Dental Implants & Aesthetics in Southport, about some of the available solutions.
According to Dr Page, “There are a number of things that can be done when considering aesthetic improvements for your teeth. If you are worried about gaps in your teeth, you may add dental material to your teeth or gums through procedures such as bonding, veneers, crowns, or gum grafts. This may work in conjunction with the removal of tooth or gum structures to help improve straightness and reduce crowding.” Unfortunately, the results of some procedures simply look unnatural.
Dr Page explains that “The biggest issue with teeth not looking natural is initially as a result of poor treatment planning. The patient’s individual oral condition, lip support and facial harmony has to be considered prior to the commencement of any treatment. Provisionalisation of the restorative phase of the treatment is then paramount for the patient to ‘try-in’ their new teeth.” Dr Chronopoulos adds that the limits of what is possible are also being pushed, “The limitations for placement and restoration with implants are reducing more and more with the advent of tissue and bone grafting. Now, most patients are candidates for aesthetic implant therapy.”
According to Dr Page, “We have really moved on from implants looking like implants and these days our goal is to achieve natural-looking ‘teeth’. By conserving tissue, keyhole surgery and minimally invasive surgical techniques, implant surgery has not only become more successful but more importantly less painful and producing more natural results.” Whilst a dentist may perform aesthetic treatments to assist in maintaining a natural, clean smile rather than overbleaching and making your teeth appear false and unnatural, you also want to ensure functionality. For instance, are implants as good as the real thing?
“Oral health is important for the rest of our health as well.”
Dr Chronopoulos confirms that “As long as patients have a good standard of oral hygiene, implants will function as teeth.” All of these cosmetic procedures require maintenance and care in varying degrees, however, their impact on your regular dental care is usually minimal. Perhaps an area that is forgotten by many of us, however, is that beyond the smile and functionality of teeth, oral health is important for the rest of our health as well.
As Dr Page points out, “There are a number of scientific papers that have linked longevity to the maintenance of the dentition (mouth). The evidence is clear: people with teeth tend to outlive those who are missing teeth.” Dental aesthetics is a growing area with a quickly expanding body of knowledge and even though dentistry has an element of competition, both Dr Page and Dr Chronopoulos work hard to share their expertise in order to improve the outcome for both practitioners and patients. Dr Chronopoulos is an internationally renowned clinician and educator.
He holds several appointments in the USA, Europe and Hong Kong and lectures as an invited keynote speaker in Australia and around the world. Both dentists conduct almost monthly training programmes for dentists from all over Australia and they mentor dentists from all over Queensland as well as university students who often can be found either observing or assisting with procedures, in their Southport practice.
A confident smile is a beautiful thing, and your memories should be filled with great grins and happy expressions. The functionality of your teeth is vital to your overall health, and the aesthetics of your smile may give you a boost of emotional confidence. Next time you are at your dentist, have a chat about any cosmetic concerns you may have and how they might rectify them. You may be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to obtain pearly whites. There is no reason why you cannot be happy with your smile thanks to the accessibility of aesthetic dental procedures. Always remember, great teeth will improve your overall health as well and could even improve your life span.