How to get Cosmetic Dentistry on a Budget

What is cosmetic dentistry?  Is it as expensive as it sounds?  Can I afford it?  These are just a few questions that come up when talking about cosmetic dentistry.  We see celebrities with big, straight, pearly white teeth giving them the absolute perfect smile.  Because those beautiful teeth belong to a celebrity, we think we couldn’t possibly afford a smile like that.  Well, Dr. Johnson is a dentist in Inglewood, CA and he’s here to tell people they can afford that beautiful smile!  Let’s talk about the most popular procedures in cosmetic dentistry. When we’re done, let’s book you an appointment with Dr. Johnson!

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is a cost-effective procedure to get those pearly white teeth you’ve always wanted.  For the health and safety of a person’s teeth, a dentist-approved method is optimal.  Dr. Johnson feels a custom tray whitening system gives the best results in an extremely short amount of time!  Before he can proceed with the teeth whitening, he will clean the patient’s teeth and then complete a comprehensive exam of the teeth and gums to ensure they are in good health.  Once your treatment is started, he will make impressions of your upper and lower teeth. The patient will put a special whitening gel in the trays for a short period of time over the next few days.  The patient can expect to see a whiter smile of 4 – 8 shades!

Aftercare

Dr. Johnson may ask his patient to avoid certain foods that are acidic, and drinks like tea, coffee, red wine, soda and tobacco products.

Dental Bonding

What is dental bonding?  “Dental bonding is a cosmetic dentistry procedure in which tooth-colored composite material is applied to a tooth, sculpted into shape, hardened, and polished.  It’s called bonding because the material bonds to the tooth.  Dental bonding is ideal for small cosmetic dentistry work, such as fixing a broken or chipped tooth or closing small gaps between teeth.  Dental bonding is also used as a tooth-colored filling for small cavities because it’s more cosmetically appealing than silver fillings.” (Everydayhealth.com) Dental bonding is a cost-effective way to give a veneer.  How does Dr. Johnson apply the bonding?  Dr. Johnson will first apply a gentle phosphoric acid to the surface of the teeth, that will roughen up the surface of the teeth, so the bonding has something to attach itself too.  Once the putty-like bonding material is applied to the tooth’s surface he will shape and sculpt the putty-like bonding.  Dr. Johnson will then use a special light to harden and set the material; he will stain the teeth to match if necessary.  The last step is polishing and buffing the teeth for a smooth, shiny finish.  The entire process is less than an hour to get the beautiful teeth the patient hoped for.  Dental bonding can last anywhere from three to seven years if taken care of properly; the material isn’t as strong as a porcelain veneer or crown.

Aftercare

The aftercare is similar to that for teeth whitening, there will be certain foods and drinks to avoid, and no tobacco use.  Chewing hard objects can chip the bonding so the patient will want to keep hard objects away from their teeth.  The patient will also need to avoid biting their nails, which can be a great thing if they’re a nail biter and want to stop, what better reason than for beautiful teeth! 

Veneers

I think most people know what veneers are but just in case… They are thin, tooth-colored shells the dentist will attach to the front surface of the teeth.  They are made from porcelain or resin-composite materials and are permanently attached to the teeth; they last anywhere from 10 to 15 years.  Most people want veneers to cover up chipped, broken, discolored, or small teeth to give them a full appearance when they smile.  Veneers can completely change the look of the face.  If a patient is thinking about getting veneers, they don’t need to have all their teeth done. Maybe they have a chipped tooth, or they just need a few teeth done to make their smile symmetrical.  The top front eight teeth are most commonly applied veneers.  When Dr. Johnson gets ready to apply the veneers, he will grind down the tooth to get the perfect fit. That’s why this process is permanent.  The patient will have a local anesthetic so keep them comfortable.  There is a less invasive option called no-prep veneers; they last anywhere from five to seven years.  No-prep veneers rarely require anesthetic because the patient’s teeth aren’t ground down past the enamel of the tooth like a traditional veneer.  The complete process from start to finish is approximately one to two weeks after he creates the mold of the patient’s teeth.  The veneers are applied with a dental cement that binds to the tooth, and an ultraviolet light that will harden the cement.  Dr. Johnson does some beautiful work with veneers. You can see his gallery of work on his website www.raymontjohnsondds.com.

Aftercare

The aftercare includes not chewing on hard objects like pens, ice and fingernails.  The patient will be advised to not open packages with the teeth, try not to chew with the front teeth, and to cut hard foods into smaller pieces.  If the patient grinds their teeth at night, they will need a splint or retainer to protect the veneers.  If the patient plays sports, they will need to wear a mouth guard.

These are the top three cosmetic dentistry procedures that Dr. Johnson does in his office in Inglewood, CA.  If you fear not being able to afford cosmetic dentistry, don’t let that stop you from changing your life.  People go too long in life not smiling because they are embarrassed of their smile.  Dr. Johnson wants everyone to love their smile. It’s his passion in life to see his patients smiling again, and he offers monthly payment plans to make sure everyone can receive the treatment they desire. 

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