Singaporebrides | Beauty

July 2010

Get That Perfect Wedding Day Smile

By Dr Leonard Tan Han Hsien

You have chosen the perfect wedding gown, gone though several food-tastings and chosen the best caterer, decided on your favorite flowers. Everything is set for that dream wedding. The only thing left to do: look radiantly beautiful. Gown and shoes – check; body toning – diet plan and gym; hair – check; make up – check; beautiful smile – hmm…?

Perfect wedding smile

You would probably never smile more in a single day than you would on your wedding day, and get photographed for all posterity. That is why you need to have that perfect wedding day smile. A smile that would be remembered more than the 6-tiered cake in the middle of your reception area or your fabulous gown and shiny designer shoes.

Make-up does wonders with concealers masking skin blemishes, mascara and eyeliner accentuating eyes, glossses for plumping up lips. Unfortunately when it comes to your smile, especially with your teeth, it is not so simple.

The most common complaint from brides-to-be are crooked teeth, yellow teeth, impacted wisdom teeth and the most feared, toothaches. What follows below is some advice on helping you achieve that mega-watt smile on your important day.

A general checkup is recommended every six months. If you have not seen the dentist recently, do not delay, do not procrastinate, make that appointment as soon as possible! A detailed dental check-up will involve taking some x-rays. Visual examination alone will not reveal problems at the tooth roots, in between teeth and under old tooth fillings.

Crooked teeth

The best solution will be orthodontics, more generally known as dental braces. Most treatments take at least one and a half years to complete. It seems like a hassle, but the benefits and the beauty of straighter teeth will last you the rest of your life if you maintain your teeth well. It is really the best value for money in terms of beautifying your smile. So plan ahead to get it done.

An alternative would be doing crowns and veneers. The results are dramatic and very quick. A simple makeover can be completed in as little as ten days. However, crowns and veneers do entail removing some tooth structure during the preparation. Also, they do need replacement in future as they get worn down or discolored. However, they represent an excellent solution to beautifying your smile quickly.

Teeth whitening

Brides these days want porcelain white skin, which causes a problem when you flash your pearly whites and they are not exactly white. Just like the geishas of the yesteryears who avoided smiling because the contrast between their white makeup and yellow teeth is less than attractive.

A simple solution to this is tooth whitening. The much-advertised “one-hour whitening” services do not give the whitest or most lasting results. Teeth are very tough structures, and just like the maturation of the finest wines, it is simply impossible to hurry the whitening process. Despite all the technological advancements, some things just cannot be rushed.

From my experience, the best results for whitening require a combination of in-office whitening and night-time home whitening. The duration of the whitening will take about three weeks from start to finish, so do plan ahead. The whiteness can be easily maintained so there is no need to do the whitening just before the big day.

Patchy whiteness on the teeth can be due to the condition of fluorosis. Treatment involves a combination of whitening and application of remineralizing cream. Treatment will take about two to three months.

Greyish teeth, most commonly caused by tetracycline antibiotics staining, are the most difficult to whiten. Treatment for these challenging cases will take at least about two months to complete.

Tooth colored fillings

Minor distractions like mildly chipped or uneven teeth can be eliminated with simple tooth colored fillings. Other complaints like old fillings and crowns that are discoloured can be easily solved by replacing the defective fillings or crowns. Fillings can be completed easily within a day. Crowns can be completed in a single day if it is simple, but most often might take a week or so.

In conclusion, most people have a phobia of seeing the dentist. The best nugget of advice I have is to try and see the dentist more often in order to detect and treat problems before they escalate. An example would be tooth decay. Spotted early, it is easily solved with a filling. Delaying treatment might result in complex root canal treatments or the worse case scenario of extractions. Treatment is also available under sedation. Sedation ranges from taking a single pill, intravenous sedation or even treatment under general anesthesia. The benefits of sedation are that you will not be aware of what is happening during treatment and very often will have no memory of the treatment itself. It is definitely a good option for dental phobics. So make that dental appointment soon.

Neuglow Dental White Centre, #10-04 Novena Medical Centre, 10 Sinaran Drive.
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