How is cosmetic dentistry different from general dentistry?
Cosmetic dentistry is a treatment area offering a number of different options to improve the appearance and function of teeth, or replace missing teeth, to improve your oral health and self confidence.
If there is something about your teeth that makes you feel self conscious, uncomfortable, or is preventing you from living life to the fullest, you can speak to a cosmetic dentist so see what treatment option or options might be available for you.
At Sydney Smile Doctor, we offer a number of cosmetic dentistry procedures including:
- Tooth whitening
- Dental crowns
- Dental bridges
- Gum lift/gum contouring
- Clear aligners and teeth straightening
What is the difference between cosmetic dentistry and aesthetic dentistry?
Cosmetic dentistry is the term typically used in Australia to describe the treatment options available to improve the appearance of teeth and help patients achieve a beautiful smile. However, in dentistry, the term "cosmetic dentistry" only refers to treatments which prioritise the appearance of teeth without a focus on their function or health.
The word "cosmetic" even derives from a greek word which describes an "ornament" - and typically, cosmetic treatments are designed to maximise cosmetic results without focussing on what is natural. Think unnaturally white teeth or a hollywood smile that looks obviously "fake."
Aesthetic dentistry is an emerging field of dentistry which balances form and function, and focuses on the beauty found in nature. Dental aesthetics gives you the best natural-looking result - the sort of dentistry that no-one will ever know you had.
At Sydney Smile Doctor, we practice aesthetic dentistry and we are passionate about giving our patients their dream smile whilst preserving the health and function of their teeth. Our dentists focus on restoring your smile to its natural best without compromising the function of your teeth and your oral health. You can read more about why your oral health is so important here. We are proud to create beautiful, natural teeth with minimally invasive techniques and a holistic approach.
We also practice slow dentistry and conservative dentistry - learn more about our philosophy here.
You'll notice we still use the term "cosmetic dentistry" throughout this site - that's because it is still the most commonly used description in Australia for treatments to improve the appearance and function of your smile.
Is cosmetic dentistry right for me?
There are cosmetic dentistry treatments for a number of dental concerns people may have, including:
- People with missing teeth;
- People with discoloured teeth - including from staining;
- People with misaligned teeth;
- People with chipped teeth;
- People with worn teeth;
- People with gapped teeth;
- People whose teeth make them feel self conscious, or who are uncomfortable smiling or public speaking because of their teeth;
- People looking with one or more concerns who are looking for a full smile makeover.
At Sydney Smile Doctor, we have a number of cosmetic dentistry options to help you create a beautiful smile and restore your confidence. You can book a free initial consultation with one of our dentists here.
Our cosmetic dentistry treatment options
Dental veneers are a cosmetic treatment which place a thin shell of porcelain or resin over the front of one tooth, or several teeth, to improve their appearance and function.
There are two main types of dental veneers - porcelain veneers and composite resin veneers. Porcelain veneers are typically stronger and last longer, but can be more expensive. Both usually require the removal of a small layer of the enamel of your natural tooth to enable the veneer to be cemented in place. Porcelain veneers are one of our most popular cosmetic treatment options.
Porcelain veneers can be great for:
- People with worn, chipped or damaged teeth;
- People with stained and discoloured teeth;
- When traditional tooth whitening is not successful.
Porcelain veneers typically require at least two visits to your dentist and you will need to care for your porcelain veneers as you would your other teeth. With careful maintenance, dental veneers can last 10-12 years before needing to be replaced.
See examples of a smile transformation with porcelain veneers below:
Dental crowns are a more invasive cosmetic dental treatment which involves the placement of a "cap" or crown of zirconia, porcelain or (less commonly) metal over the top of a tooth.
Crowns can restore teeth which are cracked, chipped or broken and protect them from further damage. Crowns last on average 10-12 years before needing to be replaced.
If you have one or more missing teeth, crowns can also be used to bridge the gap between them. Crowns are also used as replacement teeth on top of implants. Our dentists work closely with master ceramists to ensure that our crowns so closely resemble a natural tooth in size, colour and shape that you won't be able to tell the difference - they should fit seamlessly into your smile.
Dental implants are a cosmetic dentistry treatment designed to provide a long-lasting solution to replacing missing teeth, as well as protecting you from the bone loss associated with missing teeth. A dental implant is a titanium rod which is surgically placed in your jawbone and allowed to fuse to the bone over time.
For people missing one or several teeth, dental implants are usually the first step your dentist will discuss with you in the process of creating your dream smile.
Not everyone is a good candidate for dental implants. Dental implants require surgery and certain health conditions may mean that the surgery is more risky for you or the implant may be more likely to fail. Maintaining good oral health is also essential before, during and after any implant treatment, as with all cosmetic dental treatments.
Teeth whitening can be an excellent first step in a smile makeover.
Teeth whitening treatment involves the application of tooth whitening agents to your tooth's surface which removes stains and makes the teeth appear lighter or whiter.
While many toothpastes and even some cosmetic clinics offer tooth whitening these days, it's important to have your teeth whitening procedure performed professionally by a cosmetic dentist to achieve the best result.
Teeth whitening is particularly effective at removing stains from coffee, red wine and other foods, as well as other stains which build up over time. Certain sorts of stains, including tetracycline staining, will not respond to teeth whitening and your cosmetic dentist may recommend other dental treatments such as porcelain veneers.
If you have a crooked, gappy or misaligned teeth, you may be able to make a significant improvement without braces. While braces are often known for being unsightly and uncomfortable, clear braces or clear aligners, if worn correctly, can create an impressive smile transformation for many patients.
Clear aligners are also a treatment which your cosmetic dentist can offer, rather than needing to see a specialist orthodontist.
Depending on your situation, your cosmetic dentist may recommend a referral to an orthodontist for braces or more extensive tooth straightening before beginning other cosmetic dental procedures in your smile makeover journey.
Gum lifts/gum contouring
Gum lifts or gum contouring is a treatment dentists can offer to improve the appearance of a "gummy" smile and make your teeth appear larger. Excess gum tissue is reshaped or removed by your dentist using laser technology under local anaesthetic.
Full smile makeovers
With such a wide array of cosmetic dentistry treatments available, there are solutions for most cosmetic dental problems. For people with multiple cosmetic dentistry concerns, cosmetic dentists often offer a full smile makeover, where missing teeth can be replaced, existing teeth whitened, and crowns and veneers placed as required to create a complete smile transformation.
The cosmetic dentistry process
Cosmetic dental treatments usually take a few different trips to the dentist.
At Sydney Smile Doctor, we offer a complimentary first appointment with one of our cosmetic dentists to assess your teeth and discuss your concerns before discussing possible treatment options and costs with you. Your dentist will also need to take scans and x-rays of your mouth to get a complete picture of your oral health.
Your next steps will depend on the treatment that you choose, but you can learn more about our process here.
Once your treatment is complete, our cosmetic dentists will take time to discuss how to care for and maintain your new smile - with proper oral hygiene, your treatment should stay strong and last long.
How much does cosmetic dentistry cost?
Costs for cosmetic dentistry can vary a great deal depending on the cosmetic dental treatment that you choose, ranging from teeth whitening as typically the least expensive treatment to implant dentistry being the most expensive upfront.
In addition to upfront cost, it's important to discuss with a cosmetic dentist how long each treatment might last and what costs of upkeep and maintenance might be over time.
You can view our full price list here.
Why Sydney Smile Doctor?
With so many dental practices offering cosmetic dentistry in Sydney, it can be hard to know who to trust. Our cosmetic dentists understand that that every person is unique. Our smiles aren't off-the-rack, one-size-fits-all solutions. Instead, we work closely with our master ceramists to create a custom smile from scratch that's perfect for you. We won't compromise or cut corners.
Our Principal Dentist, Dr Andrew Peterson, is a Sydney cosmetic dentist who is widely regarded by his patients to be a perfectionist - he won't be satisfied until your new smile is tailored perfectly to you.
We understand that cosmetic dentistry services can be expensive and we want to ensure that the best dentistry is available to everyone. Our dental fees are competitive and we have many payment plans and options available.
Looking for the best cosmetic dentists in Sydney? Look no further. Sydney Smile Doctor are leaders in cosmetic, implant and general dentistry. To find out if Sydney Smile Doctor might be the right cosmetic dentist for you, call us now on 1300 645 680 to make your first free consultation today.
If you are looking for cosmetic and implant dentistry, you can trust the professional team at Sydney Smile Doctor to have the very latest technology for your care and comfort.
Read more about our technology here.
Our smile makeovers - see our work for yourself