DR NORMAN A CAHI and DR CHELSEA CAHI reveal some of the latest innovations in cosmetic dentistry.

Today’s society is increasingly beauty-focused, with the face, and especially one’s smile. Being central to facial beauty and harmony. As a result, dental professionals all over the world have had to step up to these demands and learn techniques to perfect the ideal smile to meet the demand of the discerning public.

Let’s discuss the latest trends:
1 Snap-On Smile For a completely non-invasive smile enhancement, it is now possible to fabricate a set of teeth made from acrylic resin, which can be fitted entirely over your existing teeth. This is used by many celebrities to improve their smile for events without touching their teeth (like Madonna closing her front gap). Snap-On smile improves the colour, size, shape and smile in general by correcting mild imperfections such as misshapen teeth, little spaces, shortened and discoloured teeth. This is only possible in selective cases.

2 Same Day Teeth For missing teeth or teeth that need to be removed, immediate implant loaded crowns are possible with modern dental techniques. There is no need for a three-month ‘downtime’ or waiting period – and again, this is only for selected patients. It’s now possible to have your unsalvageable teeth removed and replaced on the very same day.

3 The Smile Lift This involves having what is called a full mouth rehab, when all the teeth are covered with pure porcelain veneers and crowns and cemented permanently in place over your existing teeth, which have been prepared. The Smile Lift can widen your smile, improve the colour, length, width, shape and size of your teeth, and is customised within certain anatomical constraints. This can be used to reduce a gummy smile in conjunction with some gum contouring, or an ageing smile when teeth have become stunted and discoloured due to years of grinding, clenching, acid erosion, toothbrush abrasion and mechanical wear and tear (abfraction and attrition). The Smile Lift may also help to improve the pain, suffering and misery of jaw joint pain and headaches due to bruxism (day/night grinding). Very often, a Smile Lift is used in conjunction with moderate lip fillers to create a perfect harmonious and balanced semi-lunar shape smile. Very often, laser technology is used.

Warnings
All dental procedures mentioned should only be carried out by experts in the fields and who are highly trained. A very comprehensive medical, dental and personal history should be noted and discussed fully. Patient selection and the management of patient expectations are vital to ensure satisfaction, safety and sustainability of the chosen procedure. No procedure should be carried out without considering the patient’s wishes, needs, fears, social and time restraints, and financial limitations. The patient’s safety, dental integrity and oral health are always first and foremost. Today, our patients have options and we offer them choices. Maintenance of your new smile is vital to ensure the longevity of your oral investment.

Take-home message
Dentistry is undoubtedly the health profession that deals most with smile enhancement. This increasing demand for the perfect smile is media-driven, brought on by the celebrity culture. Everybody wants the Hollywood smile, but scientific knowledge and artistic sense are required to understand that smile design is customised and determined by teeth, gums, lips, facial symmetry and the underlying muscles and bony structure.

References:
Clear aligners in orthodontics. Article by: L.g.Vijayaalakshmi* A.Sumathifelicita*
Injectable fillers in aesthetic medicine. Article by: Mauricio de Maio and Berthold Rzany
Mastering the art of lip rejuvenation: identifying patterns and techniques. Article by Leslie Fletcher.

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