Everyone wants a beautiful and natural-looking smile. Unfortunately, cosmetic dental procedures are expensive, and insurance covers little, if any. Luckily, there are several affordable options that can still give you a beautiful smile without costing thousands of dollars. Check out these three affordable cosmetic dental procedures and how they can help your smile.
In-office teeth whitening is the most effective whitening procedure, which explains why it is still such a popular cosmetic dental procedure. With professional whitening, your dentist uses a highly concentrated bleaching gel to effectively and quickly whiten your teeth. Whitening is perfect for eliminating discoloration caused by stain-causing foods/beverages, age or tobacco use. However, there are some stains teeth whitening cannot treat. These include discoloration caused by trauma to the dentin and overexposure to fluoride.
Who is a candidate: To be a good candidate for teeth whitening, you must have organic stains, like the ones mentioned above. On top of that, if your teeth are thinning and transparent, you have extremely deep stains or hypersensitive teeth and gums, professional in-office whitening may not work. Discuss alternatives like home whitening regiments with your dentist.
Average cost: An in-office whitening treatment costs about $650. If you choose a professional take-home tray, expect to pay closer to $400.
Dental bonding is a versatile alternative to many dental treatments, including braces and veneers. Dental bonding uses a white resin material. Unlike crowns and veneers, which must be crafted in a lab, the bonding material is placed directly on your teeth and shaped by the dentist. This allows for quick results that can be accomplished in just a single visit. Dental bonding can be used to correct misshapen teeth, fill in gaps, correct crooked teeth and cover inorganic stains that cannot be treated with traditional whitening procedures.
Who is a candidate: If you have minor cosmetic concerns, including minor crookedness or gapping, dental bonding is a great alternative from veneers. It is a poor option if you have major cosmetic problems or have weak teeth from large cavities and fillings.
Average cost: The cost varies depending on your dental needs, but on average, expect to pay between $100 and $400 per tooth.
Tooth-colored fillings actually use the same material used for dental bonding. For many people, metal fillings create an unattractive smile. By swapping these for tooth-colored fillings, you create a seamless look, so no one will even realize you have fillings. While tooth-colored fillings are not as strong as metal fillings, they do have advantages other than cosmetic advantages. The resin material bonds to your teeth, so less tooth structure is removed to place the filling. In addition, metal fillings often damage the surrounding tooth structure, but tooth-colored fillings don't.
Who is a candidate: Tooth-colored fillings are a great option if you still have metal fillings from older dental procedures or if you get future cavities. It is not a good option if you have a particularly large cavity or filling. This is because the composite resin is less durable than metal, so a tooth with a large resin filling may not be able to withstand the pressure of chewing.
Average cost: Resin fillings cost about $150 to $200 per tooth. Plus, this is one cosmetic procedure your dental insurance will help cover.
You don't have to spend a fortune for the beautiful and natural-looking smile you desire. There are many cosmetic dental options that are affordable and effective. If you'd like more information about affordable cosmetic dental procedures, or you want to schedule a dental consultation to discuss your options, contact a dentist like Randolph S. Moore DMD today.