Dental health and overall health are closely linked. It makes sense, then, that timely dental care can help improve overall health.
The term “cosmetic dentistry” covers dental procedures or treatments that enhance the appearance of smiles and teeth, and may include:
Bonding repairs decayed, damaged or discolored teeth using material resembling tooth enamel.
Caps or crowns fit over the damaged tooth to restore shape, size, strength, and appearance.
Enamel shaping involves filing or removing some of the enamel.
Orthodontic treatment in adults is usually for cosmetic purposes.
Veneers cover the front of the teeth to address problems such as crooked or gapped teeth and cracked or damaged enamel.
Whitening cleans stains and lightens teeth color, restoring their natural appearance.
The following are common issues caused by a wide variety of conditions other than dental problems. You may be surprised to learn all can be treated with cosmetic dentistry:
Bruxism: The grinding of teeth (bruxism) can be caused by stress, sleep disorders, or even new fillings or crowns that cause an abnormal bite. Grinding one’s teeth will wear down the surface of teeth, which can trigger toothaches, headaches, earaches, cracked or loose teeth, and jaw pain. A custom-made mouthguard can protect teeth during sleep.
Chronic headaches: If you suffer from headaches caused by muscle tension, the condition can be worsened by problems such as misaligned teeth, clenched jaws, and the grinding of teeth (even when asleep) – all of which can cause the overworking of jaw muscles, exacerbating tension headaches. Fixing the underlying issues may help resolve or lessen your headache pain.
Darkened teeth: Teeth may change color after trauma because they are either protecting the nerve or dying. In the first instance, teeth may look darker. If they change color like a bruise (pink to gray), the tooth is most likely dead. In addition to cosmetic dentistry options, a root canal or extraction may also be necessary.
Mouth sores: Dentures may need to be corrected or replaced for patients with oral thrush or candidiasis (a yeast infection of the mouth) that results in the appearance of mouth sores.
Pregnancy-related issues: Because being pregnant comes with an increased risk of gingivitis and cavities, extra checkups and any needed cosmetic dentistry should be scheduled as soon as possible after finding out you’re pregnant.
Rheumatoid arthritis: In the past, teeth were extracted in rheumatoid arthritis treatment, but this addressed only the accompanying gum disease, not rheumatoid arthritis itself. Today, sufferers can significantly reduce their symptoms by taking care of their teeth, preventing tooth loss, and using a mouth guard through cosmetic procedures.
Smiles: While an unattractive smile is not technically a “dental problem,” it is a major motivation for dental treatment. An unattractive smile can lower self-esteem, confidence and impact social, personal and professional interaction. Today’s technologies and developments make it easy to achieve a beautiful smile.
To learn more about the connection between non-dental health issues and cosmetic dentistry, call Dr. Ernie Soto at (954) 368-6264 or request an appointment online.