There are several cosmetic dentistry treatments that can enhance your smile and boost your confidence. Two of the most popular treatments at our Midlothian, VA practice are porcelain veneers and orthodontics. Both can create more symmetry and balance within a smile. But how can you know which option is right for you?
In this informative article, our team explores the similarities and differences between porcelain veneers and orthodontics. We’ll also briefly explore some of the specific options available at Hawkins Family Dentistry.
Porcelain veneers are ultra-thin, ultra-strong shells of layered ceramic. They adhere to the front surfaces of the teeth, with the purpose of changing size, shape, or color. Veneers are handcrafted and customized to your unique dental anatomy. They can camouflage a wide array of aesthetic imperfections, making the smile more harmonious and proportionate.
Veneers can conceal a number of issues, including discolored, cracked, or chipped teeth. They can also close down gaps between the teeth and cover slightly crooked teeth to give the appearance of a straighter smile. For this reason, porcelain veneers are often called “instant orthodontics”.
It’s important to note that, while veneers can make a smile appear straighter, they don’t actually shift the teeth at all. Therefore, severely misaligned teeth or large gaps cannot be effectively treated with veneers.
Porcelain veneers are incredibly lifelike. Due to the high-quality of the ceramic, veneers actually reflect light similarly to natural enamel.
On average, veneers last between five and 15 years. With proper care, they can last over two decades. However, they will likely need to be replaced at some point.
Orthodontic treatment includes any appliance intended to move the teeth into their proper positions. You likely picture traditional metal braces when you think of orthodontics. But there are also other options as well, including clear aligner therapy. Orthodontic treatment not only improves the appearance of your smile, but it also enhances oral health and function.
Orthodontics address a wide range of malocclusion issues, including:
Unlike veneers, orthodontics can address severe malocclusion issues. Furthermore, patients who undergo orthodontic treatment can enjoy improved oral health and function as well as a beautiful smile. With appropriate care and maintenance, the results of orthodontic treatment can last a lifetime.
We offer a couple of orthodontic options at Hawkins Family Dentistry. Invisalign® is a popular option among our teen and adult patients. This system straightens the teeth using a sequence of clear aligner trays, rather than metal brackets, bands, and wires. Because the trays are removeable, patients can still enjoy their favorite foods while undergoing treatment. Invisalign treatment can usually be completed in about 18 to 24 months.
Six Month Smiles® is another popular treatment. Unlike traditional braces and Invisalign, this system focuses only on the front teeth – the teeth in the smile zone. Because of this streamlined approach, this treatment can be completed in as little as six months.
Porcelain veneers and orthodontics are both fantastic cosmetic dentistry options. The one that’s right for you depends on the complexity of your case and your own personal oral health goals.
To learn more, schedule a consultation at our Midlothian, VA practice. Contact Hawkins Family Dentistry online or call us at (804) 897-9800.