If you do not want porcelain veneers treatment to improve the look of your teeth, then there are a few ways of enhancing your smile.
If you have relatively small spaces between your teeth these can be closed with orthodontics or clear braces. There are different types of clear braces available to correct spaces between the teeth: Clear braces such as Inman Aligners and Clearstep.
Clear braces can take from a few weeks to 2 years to close gaps depending on each individual case.
Many people have the option of orthodontics or cosmetic dentistry, but which one is best?
The answer depends what you need and how quickly you want the results. Cosmetic dentistry or orthodontics are equally as good, but it depends on the individual case. Sometimes a combination of orthodontics followed by cosmetic dentistry is needed.
If your teeth are very crowded, teeth may need to be removed to create space. Orthodontic treatment such as clear braces and Inman Aligners takes time and is not instant like porcelain veneers. Orthodontic treatment with clear braces can take from 2 - 24 months depending on the severity of the mal occlusion. A retainer must be worn to prevent relapse of the corrected teeth.
Another possibility is teeth whitening.
A good option for improving your smile without having a full set of porcelain veneers, is a combination of cosmetic contouring and teeth whitening. Contouring is when the cosmetic dentist polishes the edges of the teeth, giving the illusion that the teeth are level. If this is combined with either home whitening or 'zoom' chair side whitening, it will improve the smile without the preparation that porcelain veneers require.
There are no known side effects to teeth contouring as only the outer superficial or enamel of the tooth is touched.
Cosmetic bonding is another option. This is where the cosmetic dentist creates a resin type veneer directly onto the tooth surface, also known as direct bonding. This is not a long term option as over time the resin will discolour with food and drink staining.
The last option is 'snap on smile'. It is the latest craze from the USA and is a plastic mould of perfect teeth that are just pushed onto the existing teeth. This method is for show only and you can't eat with them in.
Dentist Kent says It is best to go to an experienced cosmetic dentist who wants the best for you!