Are you looking for an easy way to improve the look of your smile? Do you want to avoid more involved methods like veneers or dental crowns? Have you been considered teeth whitening? As one of the most popular cosmetic dental treatments, teeth whitening has been successful for a variety of patients. 

Professional teeth whitening is performed in a dental office or through the use of take-home trays. Both methods will have different results, so you will need to consult with your dentist to determine which is the best teeth whitening method for you. In some cases, professional teeth whitening may be performed in the office and take-home trays may also be given for later use. 

At this point, you may be wondering why bother having your teeth whitened. However, if you are looking for an easy way to improve the look of your smile, teeth whitening may just be the perfect cosmetic dental treatment for you. Here are ten reasons why you should get your teeth whitened: 

teeth whitening before and after

It Can Remove the Toughest of Stains

Professional teeth whitening procedures use a whitening agent that is absorbed by the enamel and dentin layers of the teeth. After being absorbed, the chemical compound of the whitening agent reacts with the discolored molecules and causes them to break apart. This process is what removes stains and discolorations from your teeth. Professional teeth whitening can remove the tough stains from diet, poor hygiene, medications, age, and smoking. 

It’s Affordable

Teeth whitening is priced much lower than other cosmetic dental treatments. This is one main reason why it tends to be so popular. The actual cost will depend on the type of whitening treatment you opt for, but overall teeth whitening procedures are one of the most affordable cosmetic dental procedures. 

The Procedure is Easy

Having your teeth professionally whitened takes very minimal effort on your part. Simply, lay down and relax while your teeth get whiter. Prior to placing the whitening agent, your teeth will need to be cleaned so that any plaque can be removed and the surface will be smooth. Your gums will also need to be isolated from your teeth to prevent them from being irritated by the whitening agent. The whitening agent will be brushed over the surface of your teeth and left in place while you relax. Once the procedure is over, your mouth will be rinsed. 

Hand holding a stopwatch

The Procedure is Fast

In addition to being easy, the teeth whitening procedure is also fast. Most teeth whitening agents only need to sit on the teeth’s surface for 30-60 minutes to be effective. Even after the whitening agents are rinsed off the teeth, they will continue the whitening process for the next 24 hours. Only 30-60 minutes in the dental chair buys you 24 hours of teeth whitening. 

The Procedure is Safe

The active ingredient in professional teeth whitening agents are either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. Both these compounds are broken down into water while the whitening agent breaks the discolored molecular bonds. Since they become water after the whitening reaction has taken place, they can simply be absorbed into the body. 

For more information on teeth whitening, see “Teeth Whitening” or Part II of “10 Reasons to Get Your Teeth Whitened”.

Dr. Anthony Mancino is Monmouth and Ocean County New Jersey’s General and Cosmetic Dentist and has been practicing for over 25 years focusing on cosmetic and overall dental health. Dr. Mancino is a graduate of Villanova University and University of Pennsylvania. He is also a member of the American Dental Association, New Jersey Dental Association, Monmouth & Ocean County Dental Association, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, and the Academy of General Dentistry.

You can do as little as you like

When having dental veneers placed, some people choose to get a single veneer, while others choose to get an entire smile makeover. What’s truly great about dental veneers is that you can do both with no problem. Once placed, the veneers will blend in with the shape, size, and color of your natural teeth. In this way, they will be completely indistinguishable from your natural teeth.

Veneers can be customized

Your veneers will be custom fabricated to meet your individual dental needs and cosmetic goals. For example, thicker veneers may be placed to combat tooth sensitivity. Or your veneers may come in different sizes to make your unevenly shaped teeth look more uniform. Ultimately, the customization of veneers is what allows them to be used for such a large variety of dental concerns.

Veneers are long-lasting

The actual lifespan of your veneers will depend upon the type and material of the veneer you chose. In most cases, composite and no-prep veneers tend to last about 5-7 years. Traditional porcelain veneers have a much longer lifespan and can last from 10-15 years, on average. However, there are cases where traditional veneers have lasted up to 20 years. To keep your veneers lasting as long as possible, you will want to take care when eating especially hard foods. It is recommended to chew with the back of your mouth to avoid damaging the veneers.

Veneers are easy to care for

Unlike other types of cosmetic restorations, veneers are very easy to take care of. After they are placed, there is no recovery time and they require no additional care outside of your usual daily dental routine. Just be sure to brush twice a day for two minutes at a time with fluoridated toothpaste and floss once a day. And don’t forget those regular dental checkups and teeth cleanings every six months!

Veneers are not covered by dental insurance

This is probably one of the biggest downsides of veneers. Most dental insurance companies will not provide coverage for veneers because they are classified as purely a “cosmetic” service, . However, there are a variety of financing options available. To give you an idea about the cost of veneers, traditional veneers average between $925-$2,500 per tooth, while no-prep and composite veneers range from $800-$2,000 per tooth.

Overall, dental veneers are one of the best cosmetic dental treatments available today. Many people have expressed high levels of satisfaction with their veneers. Now that you know a little more about dental veneers, you’ll be able to decide if they are the right cosmetic dental treatment for you.

Dr. Anthony Mancino is Monmouth and Ocean County New Jersey’s General and Cosmetic Dentist and has been practicing for over 25 years focusing on cosmetic and overall dental health. Dr. Mancino will artistically transform your smile, often in just two visits. Schedule a consultation today!

If you are considering cosmetic dentistry, it is very likely that you have heard about dental veneers. In fact, many Hollywood celebrities have used dental veneers and have helped to raise their popularity.

Dental veneers are thin shells that are adhered to the front surface of your teeth. They are known as a cosmetic dental treatment because they work to improve the overall aesthetics of your smile. However, there are many other things that you probably don’t known about veneers.

To help you decide if dental veneers are the best cosmetic dental treatment for you, here are 10 interesting facts about dental veneers:

Veneers are placed using a minimally-invasive procedure

To place dental veneers, your dentist will first need to remove a tiny amount of enamel from the front of your tooth. This ensures that the veneer will fit smoothly over your tooth while maintaining a natural appearance. If needed, dental anesthetics can be used to keep you comfortable. For more information, please see our Veneer service page.

Veneers can fix a variety of concerns

Dental veneers are highly versatile and can fix multiple dental concerns all at once. Veneers can fix: chipped, cracked, discolored, misaligned, worn, or oddly shaped teeth, as well as teeth that have gaps between them. Ideal candidates for veneers are those individuals looking to improve the look of their smile through correcting cosmetic concerns. However, to be a candidate for veneers, you must be free from tooth decay and gum disease.

There are different types of veneers

The two types of veneers include traditional veneers and no-prep veneers. Traditional veneers are thicker and require the removal of more enamel to be placed. No-prep veneers, on the other hand, are ultra-thin and require minimal to no preparation. Because both types of veneers have their pros and cons, you will need to discuss these with your dentist to decide which type is best for you.

Veneers can be made from different materials

Veneers can be made from either dental composite or porcelain. Both materials are strong and can be colored appropriately to match or enhance your tooth color. Dental composite is easier and faster to place, requires less enamel alteration, and is more affordable. However, it does not last as long as porcelain. Porcelain has a highly aesthetic and natural appearance, is stain resistant, and is highly durable. Porcelain is also more expensive than composite. 

Veneers can eliminate tooth sensitivity

Veneers are placed on the front side of your tooth. This causes them to act like a shield, protecting your teeth from the stimuli that causes tooth sensitivity. In fact, some people get dental veneers to alleviate their tooth sensitivity. Additionally, by repairing worn or broken enamel, veneers make your teeth stronger overall.

Dr. Anthony Mancino is Monmouth and Ocean County New Jersey’s General and Cosmetic Dentist and has been practicing for over 25 years focusing on cosmetic and overall dental health. Dr. Mancino will artistically transform your smile, often in just two visits.  Schedule a consultation today!

Why Implant-Supported Dentures May Be Right For You

Do you currently have multiple missing, decayed, or damaged teeth? Are you currently wearing dentures, but are tired of them slipping and interfering with your speech? Do you wish there were a more permanent solution to replacing missing, decayed, or damaged teeth?

Currently, the American College of Prosthodontists estimates that 120 million Americans are missing at least once tooth and that about 36 million Americans are missing all their natural teeth. Tooth loss can occur for many reasons including tooth decay, gum disease, smoking, teeth grinding, certain medications, age, genetics, and certain medical conditions. 

If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, or if you are one of the 36 million Americans considering a full mouth reconstruction, then implant-supported dentures may be the answer you’ve been waiting for. Implant-supported dentures sometimes referred to as “All-on-Four or All-on-4” implants, are dentures that are rooted in place using dental implants

Similar to dentures, they can restore an entire upper and/or lower arch. Unlike dentures, however, implant-supported dentures do not slip or interfere with speech. Additionally, implant-supported dentures will not rub against the gums like traditional dentures do. But perhaps the greatest benefit of implant-supported dentures is that they stimulate the jawbone. Unfortunately, because traditional dentures sit on top of the bone instead of within the bone, they do not stimulate the jawbone. 

To stay healthy, the jawbone needs to be stimulated by the forces of chewing and biting. Without this stimulation, the body starts a process called bone resorption. This occurs approximately six months after a tooth or multiple teeth are lost. Bone resorption is the process by which the calcium is absorbed back into the body and the jawbone begins to breakdown. Over time, this process will cause the bone to change shape. 

Because implant-supported dentures provide the jawbone with stimulation, they can restore missing, decayed, and damaged teeth all while preserving the natural underlying bone structure. For this reason, Dr. Mancino strongly recommends implant-supported dentures over traditional dentures for most patients. However, for treatment to be successful, the patient in question must have adequate bone mass to support multiple dental implants. 

To determine if there is enough bone mass present, Dr. Mancino will likely obtain a CBCT scan. CBCT stands for cone-beam computed tomography, which is a specialized type of x-ray. A CBCT scan rotates entirely around the head and generates 150-200 individual 2-D images that are then compiled digitally into a single 3-D image. This 3-D image shows teeth, soft tissues, nerve pathways, and bone in a single image. The scan itself only takes about 20-40 seconds and emits very minimal radiation. 

To maintain bone mass, it is important to pursue the placement of implant-supported dentures sooner rather than later if you have missing teeth. If you have teeth that are severely decayed or damaged, these teeth will need to be extracted before the placement of dental implants. To avoid bone loss, it is often beneficial to have implants placed immediately following an extraction.
In cases where bone loss has occurred, other procedures may be used to build up bone mass. The most popular procedure is called a bone graft. During a bone graft, bone material is placed in areas of low bone mass. In about 3-6 months, this bone material grows new bone in this area. Another procedure is called a sinus lift. A sinus lift is a specialized bone graft that is performed on the upper jaw to build up the thickness of the bone between the teeth and the sinus cavity, essentially “lifting” the sinus cavity. Both procedures allow for the safe placement of dental implants.
Once it has been determined there is adequate bone mass in the treatment areas, implant-supported dentures can be placed. This process starts with the placement of approximately 2-6 dental implants in the affected arch. In the case of a full-mouth restoration, 2-6 dental implants will be placed in the upper arch and an additional 2-6 implants will be placed in the lower arch.
To place a dental implant, a small incision will be made in your gums at the implant site. Then the tooth socket will be cleaned and shaped for the implant screw. The implant will then be screwed into place and the abutment, or connector, the piece will be attached. The abutment shape can vary depending on the type of denture being used.

There are two types of implant-supported dentures: bar-retained and ball retained. Bar retained implants require less dental implants and are supported by a single bar that clicks into the abutments. Ball retained implants, on the other hand, require more dental implants, but attach to these implants using a ball and socket attachment. During your consultation, which type is best for your case will be discussed. 

Once the implants and abutments are in place, the denture can be placed. In some cases, a temporary denture will be used and in others, the permanent restoration may be placed at this time. When the permanent restoration is placed, it is called immediate load dental implants or teeth in a day implants. 

Although they are called immediate load implants, your implants will still need time to heal before they can handle the full force of chewing and biting. For this reason, you will be placed on a temporary soft food diet until osseointegration occurs. Osseointegration is a process where the implants fuse with the surrounding bone. For treatment success, osseointegration must occur to secure the implants in place. 

Along with a temporary soft foods diet, there will be additional post-operative instructions that you must follow to guarantee the best treatment outcome. With implant-supported dentures, patient compliance is an important part of a successful recovery. Specific post-operative guidelines can vary, but generally, they revolve around taking antibiotics, keeping the treatment area clean, and attending post-op appointments. 

 Additionally, you will need to avoid damaging behaviors and maintain proper daily hygiene. Damaging behaviors are things like smoking, ice or pen chewing, nail-biting, and using your teeth to open packages. Also, if you grind your teeth, you may need to wear a special dental appliance called a mouthguard to protect your denture and your implants while they heal. Proper daily oral hygiene will consist of brushing your dentures with a soft toothbrush and denture detergent after removing them every night. You will also need to gently brush the areas around the abutment to keep these areas clean as well. 

If properly cared for, implant-supported dentures can last for several years. The exact lifespan of implant-supported dentures is hard to say because there are three pieces you need to consider. The dental implants last the longest and can last up to 20 years, although most last for about 10-15 years. The denture piece, however, only lasts for about 8 years. Finally, with a bar-retained denture, attachments will need to be replaced every 6 months to a year. However, replacing the denture and attachment pieces are relatively easy. 

Are you interested in seeing what implant-supported dentures can offer you? For the best cosmetic dentist in Wall, NJ, schedule a consultation with Dr. Anthony Mancino of Comprehensive Dentistry today! Comprehensive Dentistry is also proud to serve residents in Monmouth and Ocean Counties. 

How Cosmetic Dentistry Improves Your Health

Smiling with red lips on the left side of the page against a white background

Having a great smile is highly important to many people. So important that a recent study found that about 48% of Facebook users removed themselves from tagged photos because they did not like their smile. In general, most people consider themselves and others to be more attractive when they are smiling. 

However, for people with less than perfect teeth, smiling may produce anxiety and embarrassment that causes an individual to smile less. Because smiling has a host of benefits, these individuals are missing out by not smiling more. 

Luckily, modern dentistry has developed a variety of cosmetic dental treatments that can alter the size, shape, color, spacing, and alignment of imperfect teeth to enhance the visual aesthetics of one’s smile. Depending on the specific imperfections a person would like to correct, they can choose from cosmetic dental treatments such as: 

  • Composite fillings
  • Dental bonding
  • Dental crowns or bridges
  • Dental implants
  • Full mouth reconstruction
  • Inlays/onlays
  • Invisalign
  • Porcelain Veneers
  • Teeth Whitening

Although cosmetic dental treatments are primarily known for their ability to improve the appearance of one’s smile, they are also used to restore missing, damaged, or decayed teeth to their former state. In fact, if you look at the above list of cosmetic dental treatments, you may realize that there is a definite overlap between cosmetic dental treatments and restorative dental treatments.

Both cosmetic and restorative dental treatments are very similar, however the main difference between the two is that restorative dental treatments are focused on restoring only the function, while cosmetic dental treatments restore both the function and the visual appeal. Because of this, cosmetic dental treatments offer many health benefits, including: 

  • Cleaner Teeth: teeth that are crooked, overlapping, or improperly spaced can collect more plaque and tartar, which promotes the growth of harmful bacteria. As a result, they are more likely to develop dental issues such as tooth decay and gum disease. Conversely, teeth that are properly aligned and spaced are easier to keep clean and have less areas that can trap bacteria. This means the chances of developing tooth decay and gum disease are significantly reduced. Additionally, the first step to any cosmetic dental treatment is usually a professional teeth cleaning. During a professional teeth cleaning, a special tool called a scaler is used to gently scrape and remove plaque and tartar from the surface of the teeth. The teeth are then rinsed and polished with a fluoride polish to help strengthen the enamel and prevent future plaque and tartar from accumulating. 
  • Better Medical Health: oral health is directly related to overall health and vice versa. In fact, oral health has been shown to be directly associated with endocarditis, cardiovascular disease, pneumonia, and pregnancy/birth complications. Furthermore, certain medical conditions can also affect one’s oral health including: diabetes, HIV/AIDS, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s disease. Depending on an individual’s medical history, certain cosmetic dental treatments can help to improve their oral health and minimize the risk of developing other, more complicated medical conditions. 
  • Feeling More Happy: cosmetic dentistry can help boost mental health because people who are comfortable about their smile generally smile more. In fact, according to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, 88% of people report that smiling improves their mood and makes them feel good overall. They also note that people who smile more on a regular basis can increase their lifespan by about 7 years. 
  • An Even Bite: because cosmetic dental treatments can correct the alignment, spacing, shape, and size of teeth, this also helps them to correct the bite as well. Having an uneven bite can cause a range of dental issues like premature tooth wear, tooth sensitivity, damaged teeth, or even temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD), also known as TMJ by some. Over time, an uneven bite can cause a loss of speaking and/or eating function. By placing the teeth in a more optimal position, the overall bite will also become more even, helping the jaw to function properly and retain this function for longer. 
  • Greater Social Success: a smile is an international symbol for happiness that is understood regardless of language. Simply stated, people who smile more seem more approachable. From a mental health standpoint, this can be beneficial because it helps to build and strengthen social relationships. According to the American Association of Cosmetic Dentistry, 57% of people note that a smile from a stranger makes them want to smile themselves, while 41% simply note that it improves their mood. In the workplace, smiling can also have an important impact. Many studies have found that employers are more likely to hire and promote those who smile a lot, because they promote a happier work environment. Conversely, it has also been found that those with poor dental health are less likely to be hired or promoted due to inaccurate stereotypes about poor dental health. 
  • Strong Teeth: teeth that are decayed or already damaged are not as strong as other teeth and are more susceptible to further decay or damage. In some cases, they may also be at a higher risk of becoming loose and eventually falling out. By restoring damaged or decayed teeth, cosmetic dental treatments ensure that they retain their natural form and strength. 
  • Increased Self-Confidence: a big mental health benefit of cosmetic dental treatments is their ability to increase a person’s self-confidence or self-esteem. This is huge for someone who has been embarrassed or ashamed of their smile for a long time. Feeling better about oneself has a ripple effect and will likely improve various areas of one’s life. 
  • Maintain Bone Mass: certain cosmetic dental treatments, such as dental implants, are used to replace missing teeth. Unfortunately when a tooth is lost and the bone is no longer being properly stimulated, the surrounding bone structure will begin to be reabsorbed back into the body. Over time, this will cause the facial structure to change shape and it can even result in the loss of chewing and speaking functions. Because dental implants replace missing teeth and stimulate the surrounding bone, they prevent the loss of bone mass and maintain proper function. 
  • Decreased Tooth Sensitivity: tooth or teeth sensitivity is that annoying ache one feels when biting into something too hot, too cold, acidic, sticky, or too sweet. Unfortunately, many people suffer from tooth sensitivity when they don’t have to. Tooth sensitivity can occur for a variety of reasons, but the most popular is simply that the outer enamel layer of the tooth has worn down. Without this protective layer, stimuli are able to access the tooth’s nerve through the porous dentin layer. Luckily, there are many cosmetic dental treatments that can act as a shield and block out stimuli from being able to enter the tooth. As a result, tooth sensitivity generally subsides. 

 

Are you interested in seeing what cosmetic dentistry can offer you? For the best cosmetic dentist in Wall, NJ, schedule a consultation with Dr. Anthony Mancino of Comprehensive Dentistry today! Comprehensive Dentistry is also proud to serve residents in Monmouth and Ocean Counties. 

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