Did you know that Americans use, in total, about 14 million gallons of toothpaste each year? Keeping good care of our teeth is important. According to a recent study by USA Today, your teeth are an essential part of first impressions. Both men and women said that the number one thing they most judge others on is their teeth — it’s considered more important than clothing, hair or even grammar.
There are a lot of reasons you might be looking for affordable cosmetic dentistry. Even though cosmetic dentistry primarily focuses on improving the appearance of teeth, it can often be a healthier choice as well. Here are three things you should know about your choices for affordable cosmetic dentistry.
Three Types of Procedures
- Teeth whitening. Teeth whitening procedures are one of the cheapest and easiest options offered by cosmetic dentists. Dentists will typically apply an approximately 15% carbamide peroxide solution to teeth, which penetrates the enamel and bleaches it. Although some dentists use light as well, light dehydrates your teeth in order to create an additional lighter effect that will only last for a few days.
- Dental implants. Implants, which consist of titanium screws anchored into your jawbone that support prosthetic teeth, are a great solution for people who want to avoid dentures and bridges. Dental implant dentists say that they act and feel like real teeth, and 95% of implants are successful and require little to no extra upkeep.
- Porcelain veneers. Many movie stars opt for veneers, which are thin shells covering the front of your teeth. This is a good option for people who have cosmetic problems that go beyond just small gaps or mild discoloration.
Three Tips for Avoiding Affordable Cosmetic Dentistry
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day, and after every meal if you can manage. What type of brush is best for your teeth? Studies have shown that, with proper usage, electric and manual toothbrushes can be equally effective in removing plaque and tartar, while also reducing the risk of gum disease.
- Avoid foods and drinks that are staining or corrosive, if possible. This will keep your teeth white and cavity free. Soda is always a big culprit: if possible, only drink it during meals. Soda sipped throughout the day is often when damage is incurred. Tobacco causes both yellow stains and oral cancer, and should be avoided.
- If your teeth become loose as a result of injury or medication, consult a doctor. This can prevent your teeth from ultimately falling out, which might require a relatively expensive implant (average cost: $2,000 to $4,000 per replaced tooth, even at an affordable dental clinic).
It’s worth noting that most dental care plans don’t include cosmetic dentistry, since it is “elective,” though there are several exceptions. Are you interested in affordable dental services? Let us know in the comments.