3 Non-Invasive Ways to Improve Your Smile

Check out three ways to improve your smile without major work

Your smile is important. It’s how you express happiness. A smile can change someone’s day. If you’re unhappy with yours, it could be affecting your confidence.

You should feel good about your smile. Sadly, many treatments are costly or invasive. Veneers and crowns can require filing, or removing parts of your teeth, and some treatments require a big commitment with potential long-term effects.

Cosmetic treatments, just like smiles, come in a lot of shapes and sizes. Once you know what you’re unhappy with, you can find ways to make positive changes. Some cosmetic treatments are quick and easy, whilst some take a little longer. Some can be done at home, whilst others require a clinic visit.

Have you considered non-invasive ways to improve your smile? If you don’t need treatment for a medical reason, but would prefer a boost to your smile with a cosmetic treatment, then here are three non-invasive ways to start improving your smile very quickly:

Clear Aligners

If you’d like your teeth to be straighter, but don’t want to have traditional braces fixed to your teeth with harsh glue, then you might consider clear aligners instead. Clear aligners are removable plastic trays that sit over your teeth day and night, though you can (and should) take them out when you’re eating or drinking.

With clear aligners, it’s easier to maintain good dental hygiene. You won’t have braces fixed to your teeth, so it’s easier to brush every gap in your teeth and keep looking after your gums. Clear aligners can be used for mild to moderate issues like overcrowding, crooked teeth or gaps between teeth, and treatment can be managed at home.

With aligners for teeth straightening, you can enjoy a more comfortable treatment that can be just as effective as braces. You’re likely to be a suitable candidate as long as you don’t have severe dental malocclusion.

If you’re thinking about trying clear aligners from home, try our Clear Aligners Provider Finder.

How long does this take?

Most people wear clear aligners for about six months. Your treatment time might be a bit shorter or a little longer. In rare cases, treatment could take up to 12 months. The length of time you need to wear aligners will depend on how much your teeth need moving. Minor adjustments are fairly quick and easy, whilst more significant movement will take longer.

Compared to traditional braces and other forms of teeth straightening, many people would consider clear aligners to be a ‘quick fix’. Fortunately, this doesn’t mean that the results aren’t worthwhile. Aligners can give you the straight smile you’ve always wanted, and you can keep it as long as you keep wearing retainers.

How much does it cost?

Clear aligners usually cost around $1,300 to $2,500. This is a full treatment price, covering all your aligners and remote supervision by dental professionals. Payment plans are usually available, so you can spread the cost over several instalments rather than paying up-front.

You’ll have ongoing costs, though these are relatively small. Expect to pay for retainers to maintain your new smile. Each new set of retainers will cost around $100. You should buy a new set every six months.

With clear aligners, you’ll see your treatment plan before you commit to making payments. The plan should show the expected end result, so you can decide whether or not you’re happy to go ahead with treatment.

What are the benefits?

Clear aligners can be used to straighten your teeth without regular orthodontist appointments. You can do everything at home, without the need to see a dentist in a clinic. Your aligners will be shipped directly to your door, with everything you need to progress through a self-managed treatment. Of course, if you prefer a little more support there are several providers that have clinics where you can go for scans and regular checkups.

Clear aligners are discreet and almost invisible when worn. Some providers even have the option to just wear aligners overnight, so you don’t need to worry about wearing your aligners to work or your weekly choir practice.

How long will it last?

Once your teeth are straight, there’s no reason for them to move back if you provide proper aftercare. At the end of your treatment, you’ll need to wear retainers full-time for a few weeks. After that, you’ll need to keep wearing your retainers every night. The retainers will hold your teeth in place, so they don’t start to shift back.

For most people, clear aligners are a one-time treatment. The resulting smile is one they’ll keep through the years and decades.

Whitening

Yellowing teeth can knock your confidence, though dental staining is very common. Your teeth need to last from around six years old right through your adult years, and over time they take a lot of punishment. The foods you eat, and your favorite drinks, can leave lasting marks on your teeth. As the years go by, your teeth will look less white and less clean.

Teeth whitening treatments, in a clinic or at home, can give your smile a dazzling boost. Safe-to-use chemicals work on your teeth, improving the whiteness by several shades and making your teeth sparkle and shine. Whitening treatments can decrease staining and make your teeth look less yellow, so you feel happier smiling for photographs and laughing with your friends over dinner.

How long does this take?

Professional teeth whitening, in a clinic, is usually quick and intense. An appointment taking just over an hour could whiten your teeth several shades.

If you want to go through teeth whitening at home, results might take longer to achieve. You might have to use one or more teeth whitening kits, usually resulting in gradual improvements over about 2-3 weeks. The changes might be subtle, so it can take some time to see if your treatment is working.

Usually, whitening gels used at home will work a little faster than whitening strips. With either product, treatment could take a couple of hours per day, though you might be finished with treatment slightly sooner if you choose to use a gel. Most people use their teeth whitening products in the evening. Then, they can sit and let the product develop without rushing.

Whitening toothpastes can give your teeth a boost, but you’ll want a proper teeth whitening kit if you want to do a better job.

How much does it cost?

Prices for teeth whitening kits can vary a lot. Expect to pay between $15 and $60 per kit. You can choose from gels, pens and strips for teeth whitening at home.

Professional teeth whitening is more expensive, but faster and more effective. You’ll probably pay about $300 for treatment. Some dental clinics can bleach your teeth for less, but some will charge as much as $650 for in-office treatment.

It’s important to carefully check the reviews of any teeth whitening kit. Some will be a lot less effective than others, but the price isn’t always a clear indicator of what you’re getting for your money. Sometimes, the cheapest kits are more effective than some of the more expensive in-home treatments. Professional treatments, whilst more expensive, are also more effective and reliable.

What are the benefits?

Teeth whitening is one of the quickest and easiest ways to give your smile a boost. Whiter teeth can improve your confidence, and could be achieved in as little as one hour at a clinic appointment.

Teeth whitening is amongst the cheapest treatments you can go through at home, and is one of the least invasive as it takes just an hour a day.

If you’re happy with the position of your teeth, but not with the way they look, removing stains and making your teeth whiter could give you something to smile about.

How long will it last?

Your teeth won’t stay whiter forever. Almost as soon as treatment is finished, your teeth will start to get discolored again as you go about your everyday life. Each time you eat or drink, you risk staining your teeth a little more. You’ll need to have regular teeth whitening treatment if you want to maintain your whiter smile.

Some people find that they can go for up to three years between treatments. Others find that they need to whiten their teeth every 1-2 months. A lot will depend on your lifestyle and your habits, including the types of foods you eat and whether you smoke or drink coffee, tea or red wine.

Bonding

If your teeth are chipped or have gaps between them, you could enjoy a confidence boost with a dental bonding treatment. Bonding uses a tooth-colored composite to fill in any small dental gaps, like a narrow gap between two existing teeth or somewhere where your tooth is chipped or worn.

Dental bonding must be carried out in a clinic, but it’s a quick and easy process at a fairly affordable price. If you just have one or two small gaps between your teeth then you might not feel like you need braces or aligners, but could benefit from dental bonding. If your teeth have been damaged and you’d like to repair them, dental bonding can level them out so those uneven edges can’t be seen.

Bonding can make your teeth look more level and uniform. Color matching techniques mean that your teeth will look completely natural after treatment. The composite is strong, so by the end of your appointment you’ll have no trouble eating or drinking.

How long does this take?

Usually, dental bonding takes place in just one appointment at a clinic. You could be in and out in as little as an hour, and by then your new smile will be strong and secure so you can eat all your favorite foods.

How much does it cost?

Usually, dental bonding treatment is quoted ‘per tooth’. If you have a tooth that’s chipped, a repair is likely to cost around $500 in total. In many cases, people require bonding on several different teeth. You might need bonding on several teeth if you’re using this technique for stain reduction, or if you want to fill narrow gaps but don’t want or need aligners or braces. The costs, in this case, can quickly mount up so it’s worth asking for a full quote.

What are the benefits?

Unlike crowns and veneers, dental bonding is a non-invasive treatment. Your teeth don’t need to be drilled. Nothing is permanently removed. The bonding composite is attached to your existing dental structure.

Tooth bonding can fix a variety of problems, from significant staining and off-color teeth to chips, cracks and uneven shapes. If you have one tooth that’s shorter than the rest, bonding can be used to extend it so they’re all in line. Bonding is a quick fix for many different issues, with colors well-matched so nobody can see that treatment has even taken place. Think of bonding as a patching kit for your teeth.

How long will it last?

Composite resin isn’t as strong as a human tooth. It won’t last forever, so you will need to go through dental bonding again. Bonding can be a big investment each time, so after you’ve been through your first bonding treatment it’s worth saving gradually for your next visit.

In most cases, dental bonding will last for 5-10 years. If you look after your teeth and you’re careful, you may get longer with your composite. Fortunately, repairs and replacements are just as quick and easy as the original treatment. Once again, the colors will be matched so everything looks completely natural.

Your teeth could be damaged by biting on hard objects. Make your composite last longer by being careful about what you eat, and not chewing absent-mindedly on pen lids or other solid objects.

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