The different types of cosmetic dental treatments available

There are a variety of reasons why you may not be confident of your smile, from crooked, misaligned and damaged teeth to the extent of replacing completely missing teeth. Sometimes, even though you look after your teeth with care and have them regularly checked by your dentist, you may not be happy with your smile, which can affect your confidence immensely.

Today, there are a variety of excellent cosmetic dental treatments that can help you get the bright, sunny smile you’ve dreamed of and boost your confidence, too. Read on to find out what the different types of treatments are from a professional cosmetic dentist in Essex.

Cosmetic dental treatments

There are 5 main types of cosmetic dental treatments to consider, depending on what the problem is and the condition of your teeth.

Teeth whitening

The least invasive and most cost-effective treatment is teeth whitening. Over time, our teeth can become stained due to the food and drinks we consume. This can also happen if the enamel on our teeth wears away too much, and the natural off-white dentine colour starts to come through.

With teeth whitening, your dentist thoroughly cleans your teeth to remove any tartar, plaque and residual debris from the crevices between your teeth. A teeth whitening technique is then applied to whiten your teeth, which could include using a bleaching agent depending on the level of discolouration, leaving you with a lovely bright, shiny white smile.

Dental veneers

Dental veneers are usually made from porcelain or composite material and are very thin, custom-made coverings that go over your teeth to cover any visible flaws, such as colour, chips, shape and even the length of teeth.

The cover is secured to your teeth using a dental cement which is then cured by ultra-violet light. They are designed to colour match the natural colour of your teeth and look as natural as possible.

Dental veneers, as long as your teeth are looked after, for up to 20 years and the veneer is unlikely to stain over that period of time.

Composite bonding

Composite bonding is similar to veneers but is often less expensive, is a painless treatment and can be completed in around an hour. They don’t last as long as veneers, usually up to 10 years as long as they are looked after, but are a good alternative to covering chips, discolouration and cracked teeth.

Your dentist will use a resin that is pliable and can be shaped easily to match the natural shape and colour of your other teeth. Composite bonding is also cured using ultra-violet light and some dentists, once your teeth have been thoroughly cleaned, may recommend a whitening treatment prior to the application before the resin is applied.


There can be nothing worse than having to wear a metal brace to straighten misaligned teeth; for some people, it can damage their confidence significantly. However, with an innovative Invisalign aligner, you may not need to suffer a brace with wires or train tracks.

The Invisalign method is to mould a clear thermoplastic aligner tray that is a replica of your teeth, complete with minor adjustments that put gentle pressure on your teeth, pushing them back into alignment.

The benefit of Invisalign is that they are completely clear, and most people don’t know you are wearing an aligner. They can be removed to eat and to clean your teeth quickly and easily. However, for the best alignment results, they do need to be worn for at least 22 hours a day.

Invisalign aligners don’t detract from your appearance, thereby boosting your confidence and allowing you to continue your daily activities. They also won’t irritate, rub on your gums or damage your teeth in the way that traditional metal braces with wires and train tracks may well do.

Dental implants

Dental implants are crowns or bridges that are used to replace missing teeth or gaps where half a tooth has perhaps fallen away. They are usually made from porcelain and created to match the shape, size and colour of your other teeth.

They are secured by implanting a post, which is a tiny screw, into your jaw bone which is left to settle so that the post is integrated into the bone and the jaw bone has healed. This usually takes 3 to 6 months, at which point you return to your dentist, and they will add the connecter and secure the crown or bridge (artificial tooth) to the connector. The final part of the process is to polish the new tooth.

This process is usually done under local anaesthetic and requires several visits to the dentist, so is an expensive procedure. However, it does mean that you have a new tooth that is likely to last a lifetime, as long as it is looked after.