beauty

7 different ways to fix your teeth if you sincerely hate them.

If you're a person with teeth, you either like the ones you have (bless up) or you hate them (sad face). 

If you're on the latter end of things, welcome. Please take a seat. 

Watch: Ever feel like that little speck in your teeth just won't go away? Same. Here's a VERY ACCURATE description of what it's like. Post continues below.


Video via Mamamia.

Depending on what your particular concern is (Crooked! Yellow! Crowded! Never liked 'em!), there are TONS of options out there to help you get that cute smile you've always wanted. We promise.

And don't go around thinking you're the only person with screwed up teeth, mmmkay? Nearly 27 percent of Aussies are uncomfortable about the appearance of their teeth - so you're not alone. In fact, you're very NOT alone.

Listen: Speaking of teeth... here's how to nail a bold lip without getting it all over your fangs. Post continues below.

Because we know exactly nothing about teeth, we asked a kind mouth wizard to help us wade through the confusing world of dental treatments.

So, here's a dentist's recommendations for people who really hate their teeth and would very much like to do something about it:

1. Invisalign.

If your teeth enjoy being anything but straight, Invisalign could be a very GOOD option for you. 

Heard of it? Nah?

Invisalign is basically a brand of thin clear plates (aligners) that are worn on the daily to help move your teeth into the correct position. 

"I commonly use it to fix crooked teeth and bucky teeth," said Dr Aodhan Docherty from About Smiles. "The aligners are much less visible than traditional braces and it often doesn't take any longer than the old train tracks."

How long are we talkin', Doc?

"Most of my patients use them for six to 12 months, but each case is a little different, so it has to be carefully planned by the dentist and closely monitored," explained Dr Docherty. "I see my patients every four to eight weeks to track how the teeth are moving, make any adjustments and give the next few sets of aligners which you change at home yourself."

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Am I too old for that kinda thing, though? 

"Most of my patients are in their 20s, 30s all the way up to 80s! Thankfully these days with Invisalign we are often able to create beautiful straight smiles without the hassles of metal braces and wires."

2. Braces.

"We're all pretty familiar with these - whether we've worn them ourselves or have had friends who had them. These days luckily they are not just metal, but often clear or even hidden on the inside surface of the teeth."

It all sounds very sexy, no?

"Compared to Invisalign, braces can be a little harder to clean, and if a wire or brace comes off, it can poke into the cheek - ouch!"

Goodness me.

"In my practice I use braces less and less these days - mostly just for tricky cases where Invisalign may take too long, or when I need to change the bite which can be more difficult to do with Invisalign."

*Prays she's not a tricky case or a weird bite*.

3. Porcelain veneers.

If you're anything like us, you're very familiar with veneers, yet at the same time know absolutely nothing about them. 

Classic us guys!

So, what actually are porcelain veneers? 

"Porcelain veneers are super thin shells of porcelain which are attached permanently to the front surfaces of the teeth and can change they shape, colour, size and appearance of the smile drastically," said Dr Docherty.

We love drastic measures! So how does it actually work?

"Picture how a false nail can be attached to your nail, and it's very similar. Veneers need to be looked after just like you do your normal teeth, with twice daily brushing and once daily flossing to keep them clean."

The ol' once daily flossing, hey? Sure, we do it.

Apparently keeping this kind of strict routine means your porcelain veneers can typically last 10 or more years, which is pretty neat. 

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Now, if you've seen the 'shark teeth' trend on TikTok/Katie Price's YouTube video, you're probably starting to wonder (or freak the f**k out) about what's really involved with preparing teeth for veneers.

"One of the most common things I am asked is if your teeth need to be shaved down to little stubs for veneers - and the answer is definitely no! You won’t walk out of your appointment looking like Katie Price in her recent photos."

Omg PHEW.

"Because porcelain veneers are a permanent solution for your smile, the teeth need to be altered to allow the ultra-thin porcelain shells to attach, and the join-line between the porcelain shell and tooth be hidden," explains Dr Docherty. 

"However, the amount of tooth that needs to be removed is very tiny - often less than 0.5 mm. To ensure my patients are comfortable with the final design, we use the latest digital technology to create a 'Trial Smile', which is attached to the teeth temporarily. This gives my patients a chance to show their family, friends and to approve the oh-so-important selfie test."

In terms of how long it takes, Dr Docherty said you typically need about three appointments for porcelain veneers.

"The first visit involves a consultation and 'Trial Smile'. On the second visit, we'll usually focus on preperation - the space for the veneers is created and you leave with some temporary veneers. During the last visit, we attach the permanent porcelain veneers to the teeth." 

Three visits? That sounds pretty doable.

"Each veneer is made by a ceramic technician who is an artist and it usually takes two to four weeks to create a full set. If your dentist has a laboratory team on site, it also makes the process really easy. My patients meet the person who will make their smile to discuss the final colour, shape, surface texture and to learn a little bit about the patient as we want to make every single veneer bespoke to fit the smile and personality of the patient." 

Are you wondering how much all this costs? Same.

"This will obviously depend on how many teeth you get done," said Dr Docherty. "Usually we would do the top teeth, which are visible on smiling, and this is generally eight to 10 teeth. In terms of the ballpark cost, "pricing for porcelain veneers start from $2,100 through to $3,000 for each tooth."

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TIME TO START SAVING, YOU GUYS.

4. Composite veneers.

Don't worry - there's another option if porcelain veneers are too steep for you. It's called composite veneers - basically a material that's applied straight to the teeth, so there's not as much prep involved.

Or as a professional explains: "Composite resin is a white plastic material used by dentists to fill decay. It can also be used to change the appearance of the teeth by 'bonding' it onto the front surface, shaping it and setting it."

So, how much does this cost?

"Composite veneers, often referred to as 'bonding' is cheaper than porcelain costing up to half the cost. At my practice the pricing for composite veneers start from $500 through to $1,100 for each tooth. They typically last up to five years, however they are prone to chipping and staining so can require more maintenance than porcelain."

5. In-chair teeth whitening.

If you're more concerned about the colour of your teeth rather than anything of the other stuff - s'ok, we got you covered too, friend.

You have a couple of options here. The first being in-chair whitening. 

"In-chair whitening involves a whitening gel being applied to the teeth whilst in the dental chair. The gels which whiten teeth basically do a deep stain removal, taking away all the remnants of tea, coffee, red wine and all the good stuff!" 

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Wanna know what's involved? Course ya do.

"It is typically applied for 60 minutes and doesn’t damage the enamel at all. The tooth enamel has little pores which the gel goes into and the stains then come out of."

Just in case you didn't read that bit, YOUR TOOTH HAS PORES WTF.

Anyhoo! So, you go to a dentist for this kinda procedure, yeah?

"We have all heard of some horror stories of backyard teeth whitening where a van rolls up to your house or office and untrained people show you how to apply the gels to your own teeth," said Dr Docherty.

"While more expensive in the dental office, the benefit of having a professional do the whitening is that they can assess which areas are not suitable for the gels to sit on (like receded teeth - ouch!), and a protective barrier is applied to the gum lines beforehand so they are not burnt."

That sounds... terrifying.

"Sometimes one in-chair session is not enough so we follow it with at home whitening too."

Cool!

6. At-home teeth whitening.

In terms of home whitening, you're probably wondering if those supermarket-bought whitening kits are legit, yeah? 

Well, they're not exactly game changers. Supermarket-bought whitening kits have the same limitation as whitening toothpastes – they have a low peroxide concentration. So, while you might notice some changes, they won't be major. If you wanna up the ante (all of us), custom-made mouth trays are probably the way to go.

"At-home whitening uses plastic guards which are custom fit to your teeth to apply whitening gels at home," explained Dr Docherty. "The gels are not as strong as those used for in-chair whitening. You will commonly do this daily for two weeks and your dentist will then check the progress."

7. Enamel abrasion.

Never heard of it? Neither.

"For people with white, patchy chalky-looking teeth, enamel abrasion may be a good option," said Dr Docherty.

Sooo, what exactly is it?

"If you’ve ever had a polish at the dentist, this treatment uses the same polishing device. However, it involves a special paste that uses small particles to smooth out the chalky areas and blend them into the surrounding areas. It virtually causes no damage at all and is commonly followed up with teeth whitening for an overall boost to the colour of the teeth."

Feature image: Getty

Have you had any of these treatments before? What are your thoughts? Share with us in the comment section below.

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