Minimally-Invasive Cosmetic Dentistry
“Tooth enamel is precious. Once removed, it can never, ever grow back, leaving the tooth weaker and more vulnerable to tooth decay, nerve inflammation or death.”
~ Dr Dee-Anna Luong
At Alma Dental, we believe tooth enamel is extremely precious and needs to be retained whenever possible. The more of the natural enamel that we can preserve, the longer the tooth is likely to enjoy good health and to last.
Technological advances in dentistry have provided us with many treatment options. However, it’s not yet possible to regrow enamel, nor can it be replaced by anything with the same or superior qualities.
So if our skilled dentists can achieve a beautiful cosmetic dental result without sacrificing enamel, they will do so. This approach often means that the treatment is a little more challenging and clinically demanding. We call this “minimally-invasive cosmetic dentistry”
We aim to achieve:
Minimal Intervention, Maximum Aesthetics
Whenever our dentists treat a tooth, they look for opportunities to preserve its enamel without compromising the cosmetic result.
This approach is only possible because:
- We use technologically-advanced composite resins that are strong, bond to the tooth. These resins can be built up in layers to mimic the natural layers and characteristics of enamel
- Our dentists have invested time in learning and developing the techniques that make this possible
Creating beautiful tooth-coloured fillings and veneers with composite resin is more clinically demanding than other methods. We think the additional effort is well worth the superior cosmetic results.
In The Past, This Wasn’t Possible
The Era Of Metal
Fillings are used to fill the voids left by decay or wear and tear. The earliest fillings were made of metal, either gold or silver-coloured amalgam. While these materials were durable, these metallic fillings were so dissimilar in colour to natural enamel that their presence in the mouth was noticeable.
The Arrival Of Tooth-Coloured Fillings And Crowns
The arrival of tooth-coloured porcelain and, later, composite resins, was an exciting time for dentistry and heralded the arrival of cosmetic dentistry. It was finally possible to make fillings, veneers and crowns that weren’t a dark, contrasting colour!
“Tooth-Coloured” Crowns and Veneers Didn’t Always Blend In
Although these new materials were “tooth-coloured”, that’s where their similarity to natural enamel ended. The materials tended to be quite opaque, lacking the natural translucency of enamel. While they were much better than metal in terms of aesthetics, they still looked very different to natural teeth.
Sacrificing Enamel To Make Way For Porcelain
In the past, the techniques required to place tooth-coloured crowns and veneers onto a tooth were quite destructive.
In the past, the techniques required to place tooth-coloured crowns and veneers onto a tooth were quite destructive. The teeth had to be trimmed, sometimes quite heavily, to make room for the porcelain and the cement that held them in place.
To fit a tooth-coloured porcelain crown or veneer, the teeth had to be trimmed, sometimes quite heavily, to make room for the porcelain and the cements that held them in place.
This removal of enamel made the teeth weaker and sometimes more vulnerable to recurrent decay.
Recent Cosmetic Dental Advancements
We now have access to beautiful, stronger and more natural-looking composite resins that can be bonded in thin layers directly to the enamel. These days, we remove far less (if any) enamel from a tooth during standard cosmetic dentistry procedures.
Minimally-Invasive Cosmetic Dentistry At Alma Dental
We anticipate that the minimally-invasive cosmetic dentistry techniques that we use at Alma Dental will extend the lifetime and improve the health of many teeth.
To learn more about Minimally-Invasive Cosmetic Dentistry, please call our practice.