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Cosmetic Dentistry

This type of dentistry includes all the items under the smile makeovers section along with teeth whitening.

 This can encompass various techniques, including direct veneers, smile contouring, veneers,crowns, bridgework, dental implants, braces and even dentures. Our Principal Dentist, Ramesh Siva, who is a Full Member of the British Academy of Cosmetic Dentists, shall explain the meaning of all these terms:

1. Direct veneers.

These consist if cosmetic tooth coloured composite filling material added to teeth to improve the appearance. They can be a cost effective and quick method of improving smiles. The downside being that they do require maintenance over the years which may incur further costs, and they generally may not keep their aesthetic appearance as well as porcelain veneers.  Prices start from £ 85 per tooth.

2. Smile contouring.

This involves the combination of tooth coloured fillings and adjusting the enamel of the teeth with fine sand paper discs or fine diamond drill tips. This technique may only be possible for minor improvements, but it is also quick and cheaper than other methods. Prices start from £45 per tooth

3. Indirect Veneers

This is a popular way of dramatically improving smiles. They consist of thin porcelain shells that are bonded to the front of your teeth, and careful planning is required to get the best and most predictable results. In most cases preparation of  the teeth is necessary, At the same visit moulds or impressions are taken and a temporary veneer is usually fitted onto the tooth for 2 weeks. The moulds are sent to a dental laboratory where a highly skilled technician will construct the prescribed veneer to the required dimensions, shape and colour. At the next visit, this is then checked for fit, appearance and comfort. If no modifications are required this is then fitted with a permanent cement. On average they may last 10 to 15 years, but they generally need replacing in the future. Advantages include excellent and relatively long term aesthetics. Disadvantages include the need to trim the teeth, with, approximately a 1 in 5 chance of sensitivity or subsequent root canal treatment.

When several teeth are being planned for veneers, for instance when smile makeovers are being done, there will be additional steps recommended. The planning in these cases is essential to agree on the final result before any tooth preparation is done. Otherwise you are never too sure what the final result will be until the veneers are all fitted! The way the planning is done is by making a 'mock up' of the envisaged desired final look. Once this is agreed on then this 'mock up' can be used to make the temporary veneers. This gives an opportunity to assess the shape and position of the teeth, along with speech. Changes, if required can then be easily made and once both the patient and dentist are happy with the result, these temporaries can be used as a template to fabricate the final porcelain veneers. Prices start from £595 per tooth.

4. Crowns

Crowns are shells made from either just ceramic, ceramic bonded to a hard tooth coloured under layer such as zirconia, ceramic bonded to a metal under layer, or they can just be made of metal. The tooth will need substantial reduction to create a 'stump' for the crown to fit over. Generally they are now only required if a tooth is heavily filled, as there is an approximately 20% risk of subsequent root canal therapy once a tooth is prepared for a crown. Improvements  As for indirect veneers, at the same visit moulds or impressions are taken and a temporary crown is fitted onto the tooth for 2 weeks. The moulds are sent to a dental laboratory where a highly skilled technician will construct the prescribed crown to the required dimensions, shape and colour. At the next visit, this is then checked for fit, appearance and comfort. If no modifications are required this is then fitted with a permanent cement. On average crowns last 10 to 15 years. Prices start from £495 per  tooth.

5. Bridgework

 

Bonded Bridges

 

Bonded bridges are essentially crowns that are linked together. The teeth on either side of a space are trimmed as for a crown, and as before, moulds are taken and they are sent to a laboratory. Temporary crowns are placed onto the prepared teeth. At the next visit, the bridge is then checked for fit, appearance and comfort. If no modifications are required this is then fitted with a permanent cement. Advantages include the fact that this is a fixed tooth replacement unlike dentures. Also they can look very natural. Disadvantages include costs (they are more expensive than dentures), trimming the adjacent teeth may result in root canal treatment, cleaning beneath the bridge can be difficult, and the bone under the false tooth may shrink in time resulting in a space between the gum and the bridge.  Prices start from £1495 for a 3 tooth bridge.

 

Maryland Bridges

 

This type of bridge consists of a laboratory constructed, porcelain covered, false tooth. This is held in place by attached metal wings which are bonded to the adjacent teeth. These can look quite natural and  the teeth need minimal or no preparation. The disadvantages include the possibility of these bridges debonding, they are not as strong as bonded bridges. In some cases the adjacent teeth that support the bridge may be slightly discoloured by the metal wings attached to the back of them. Prices start from £495.

6. Dental implants

These consist of titanium, and are placed in the jaw bone where missing teeth used to be. Crowns, bridges or dentures can then be attached to them to provide a secure and highly functional replacement teeth. They are now so successful that they are the first choice in treatment in these situations.
An initial consultation and planning aids are first required. Then, if there is already a space, an implant can be placed 2 weeks later. If the tooth needs to be removed first, then an implant can be placed from 8 to 12 weeks after this is done. A cover is placed on the implant and usually antibiotics are supplied. The implant is then left to fuse to the bone for typically between 6 to 12 weeks. After this time, depending on the cover placed onto the implant, either this is changed and left for a further 6 weeks, or impressions or moulds are taken and sent to a laboratory for fabrication of the final crown, bridge or denture. 3 weeks later this is then fitted and normal eating can be resumed immediately.

 

Regular maintenance in the form of brushing and flossing, along with 2 to 4 visits to the hygienist are the long term requirements. In other words, not a lot different than the advice for the maintenance of your teeth.

 

When implants are placed in areas at the front of the mouth, where the appearance is important, we tend to recommend the premium implant systems we offer. We can also offer the most advanced procedures to improve the results including advanced colour matching and gum plastic surgery techniques.
On our photo gallery section there is a dental implant section to view to see examples of our work.

7. Clear  Braces

The advent of clear braces has been a significant breakthrough in straightening teeth for adults. The most well known system is known as Invisalign. This consists of a series of these clear, thin mouth guards, which are changed every 2 weeks. The results can be startling, without the need for very visible metal wires stuck onto teeth. We also now provide an alternative system called Clear Guide. This is a less expensive system but is only applicable in certain situations, so for less severe conditions.

 

The first visit consists of a free consultation. At this appointment all options are discussed, and you will be advised whether Invisalign or a different approach may be the most effective. An estimate for the costs and length of treatment can be given at this time. The next stage involves obtaining all the records to send to Invisalign. This includes taking moulds of the teeth, x-rays, and photographs. An on-line prescription form is also completed.

 

Two weeks later a 3D movie called a Clincheck showing how your teeth will straighten is ready for you to view. This also gives the exact length of treatment. The actual braces or 'aligners' can then be ordered. A further 2 weeks on these aligners have arrived at Bridge dental and can be fitted. Full instructions and storage cases are provided.
Each aligner shold be worn for 20 to 22 hours per day, and for 2 weeks. We usually provide 6 to 8 weeks worth of aligners so that you don't need to come in too often.

 

At the end of treatment, you will need to have a form of 'retainer' made. This is to prevent your teeth relapsing into the condition they were in beforehand. The costs we quote include a set of night time retainers. We also include free teeth whitening and 1 years' aftercare (terms and conditions apply).

 

So our Invisalign quote includes:
-a free consultation
-all aligners, visits and necessary x-rays
-free teeth whitening
-free set of night retainers
-free 1years aftercare

8. Dentures

With the advances in dental implant technology, we can attach dentures to implants. This provides a much more secure solution, giving you more confidence and comfort.