The simple answer to this question is: “It depends,” say Dr. Jamie Alexander of Boynton Beach, FL. “If you have generally healthy teeth and gums and good tooth alignment, your smile makeover may be simple. Some cosmetic procedures can be accomplished in as few as one or two appointments. Other procedures need to be staged over a period of months. With today’s technology, materials, and methods, a plan can be made for you that takes into account your priorities and what will be best for your oral health in the long run. If you have teeth that are worn, cracked, discolored, misshapen, misaligned, loose or missing, it is well worth the investment of a comprehensive makeover that produces an optimally healthy mouth. When I plan a smile makeover, I look at the how the teeth come together. If the occlusion needs adjustments for optimal chewing function and minimal tooth wear, I consider whether a course of orthodontics is needed or if another approach will work. If teeth are significantly damaged with wear and cracks, simple bonding is not indicated, but rather, bite correction and crowns are usually best.”
Long lasting restorations are one aspect of a makeover; optimal aesthetics is another. For these, Dr. Alexander takes into consideration more than the appearance and health of individual teeth. He looks at facial structure, the shape of the lips and tooth exposure at various degrees of smile, and gum contours. Orthodontic and restorative procedures can be used in combination to optimize tooth length, symmetry, and tooth shape and size; close gaps; correct the angles of teeth; eliminate stains; and make all teeth sparkle like healthy natural dental enamel. Combining function and aesthetics for best outcomes requires knowledge. Making restorations that are just the right design for each tooth and in combination with all other teeth, the lips and teeth is a developed skill. The proper staging of treatments for efficiency and effectiveness requires knowledge.
“I feel blessed,” says Dr. Alexander, “to have had the postgraduate training I did at The Pankey Institute. There, I was mentored by some of the best restorative and cosmetic dentists in the country. When creating a youthful, beautiful smile, my goal is to address your health and functional needs, not just your cosmetic goals. This approach reduces the need for future dentistry and results in a smile you are happy with for the many years to come. If you are thinking about a whole mouth restoration with optimal solutions to your dental health and cosmetic problems, I welcome you to schedule an initial consultation.”