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Improving your teeth and your smile

Options for better teeth

Author: Jem Mosley October 29 2011

smile improved by veneers

When it comes to beauty, a gorgeous smile is important. Who doesn't want beautiful, straight, gleaming white teeth? Your smile is often one of the first things people notice about you, so no doubt you want it to be as lovely and healthy-looking as possible.

We're not all blessed with naturally perfect smiles, however. Whether through genetics, illness or injury, your teeth may be discoloured, uneven or otherwise in need of help. Fortunately, there are several options available today to help perfect your smile. The field of cosmetic dentistry has developed multiple strategies and techniques to brighten and improve teeth. If your smile could use some improvement, read on to learn about your options.

Tooth whitening

One of the most commonly used new techniques for beautifying one's smile is tooth whitening. Age, cigarette smoking, food and drinks can all contribute to tooth discoloration over the years, and most people can benefit from a tooth whitening procedure.

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What type of tooth whitening strategies are available? You can get your teeth whitened either through an in-office laser procedure, or via a professionally-made at-home whitening kit.

In-office tooth whitening procedures, performed by a dentist, are more expensive but produces immediate whitening results. This type of tooth whitening is performed using a light-activated bleaching agent, applied via laser; the colour improvement can be striking, which makes it a popular procedure. 

If in-office tooth whitening is not for you, consider at-home whitening kits. These kits include bleaching trays prepared by your dentist, moulded to your precise teeth shape. You then wear the trays, which are filled with a special professional-grade tooth whitening gel, for a few hours or up to overnight, depending on the type of kit. These kits may be more economical, but take some time to produce desired results, and may not create as dramatic a transformation as in-office procedures often can.


Tooth veneers are used to perfect a person's smile when teeth are too stained, damaged, or otherwise imperfect to benefit from simple tooth whitening. Veneers are super-thin "shells" made from porcelain, ceramic, or a special composite, applied to the front of the teeth. The veneers are tooth-coloured, and give the appearance of smooth, white, perfect teeth. While veneers can result in extremely dramatic improvement in the appearance of your teeth, they will need to be replaced within one to ten years, depending on veneer material.

Dental Implants

If you have missing teeth, you may need to consider dental implants. Dental implants are a relatively new dental option, but are becoming quite popular because of their increased durability over regular dentures and crowns. A dental implant is an artificial root portion of your tooth; it is placed into your jawbone and is used to secure and support dentures, crowns or bridges. Dental implants help preserve surrounding bone loss, function better than regular false teeth and are easier to care for. If you are interested in dental implants, consult a dentist, who will examine your gums and teeth and determine whether you are a good candidate for this procedure and if there are any initial problems, such as gum disease, that need to be cleared up first.

With these exciting cosmetic dentistry options, anyone can enjoy an improved, healthier and more beautiful smile!

About the Author

Jem is a freelance writer who concerns himself with the wellness/problem issues that surround ones oral hygiene. An expert in the field of cosmetic dentistry, you can follow him on Twitter: @writerjem

Jem's homepage: Cosmetic Dentistry Guide

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