Dental Glossary

Cosmetic Dentistry

With cosmetic dentistry, we utilize a number of dental treatments to improve the beauty of your smile. Cosmetic dentistry can include a variety of techniques, from re-contouring the teeth or gums to placing veneers on a number of teeth. Below are some of the more common cosmetic procedures we perform daily in our office.


Porcelain laminates veneers are ultra-thin shells of ceramic material placed over the teeth to close space, change color, or straighten the teeth. Veneers are an exciting procedure for anyone wishing to improve their smile.

Crowns / Porcelain Crowns

Crowns are dental restorations otherwise knows as “caps”. They are used to restore teeth that have been broken or are at high risk of doing so due to old, over-sized fillings or fractures. There are a variety of materials used to construct these, and by working with some of the finest laboratories in the area, we are pleased to produce crowns that look and feel like your real teeth.


Bridges are constructed to replace one or more missing teeth. The teeth on either side of the existing space are used to anchor the bridge. We are now able to construct beautiful porcelain over metal bridges to produce the best results for each particular situation.

Tooth-colored fillings

Composite resins and ceramics are not only used to restore decayed areas, but are also used for cosmetic improvements of the smile by changing the color of the teeth or reshaping disfigured teeth. They allow us to combine beauty and strength when filling teeth.

Teeth Whitening

Bleaching teeth is one of the easiest and most gratifying procedures we perform in our office. We consider individual wants and needs and offer our patients the choice of accelerated in-office whitening or home bleaching. In-office whitening &quotBrite Smile” give you instance results in a little over an hour. Take home whitening trays allow you to whiten at your own schedule, in the comfort of your own home. We can provide you with custom fitted trays.


Dental bonding was one of the first and most promising techniques for &quotinstant” smile enhancement. Dental bonding is not as durable as parceling veneers or crowns, but is still suitable in many cases to correct broken or misshapen teeth.

Tooth Re-contouring/Reshaping

Recontouring or reshaping the teeth (also called odontoplasty, enameloplasty, stripping or slenderizing) is a procedure in which small amounts of tooth enamel are removed to change a tooth’s length, shape or surface.

The procedure is usually done to improve appearance by creating more harmony or balance in the look of the smile. Re-contouring is the most conservative cosmetic treatment. It is a quick and painless procedure whose results can be seen immediately.

Gingival Sculpting

Many of our patients, when they first arrive, complain of their “gummy” smile. This reaction is simply the result of too much of the gum showing. Even if patients are not initially aware of the impact of their gums, much like cuticles on a fingernail, the gums can and do grow down over the teeth and can make them look less appealing.

Uneven gums can also play other tricks on a smile, like making teeth look slanted, or unusually large or unusually shaped. Contouring the excess gum tissue is a relatively easy procedure. It can can result in dramatic improvements to one’s smile. It should not be overlooked in trying to achieve optimal aesthetic results.

Post and Core

This procedure is required to rebuild the proper support for a crown when a tooth is damaged to the extent that there is not sufficient support for a restoration like a crown.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are man-made replacements for natural teeth. They have become the most widely accepted method for tooth replacement. One tooth or an entire set of teeth can be held firmly in the mouth with dental implants. Implants are replacements for the tooth roots that fuse with the bone and act as an anchor for replacement teeth. They are made from titanium and certainly won’t decay. One tooth or a whole set of replacement teeth can be firmly held in place by dental implants, giving you an improved ability to chew. Increased chewing ability means you can enjoy more nutritious foods, contributing to your overall health and well-being. Dental implants help you avoid embarrassing denture problems, improve your appearance, boost self-confidence, and allow you to speak more clearly.