Your smile is one of the first things that other people notice about you, so you’ll want to do everything you can to make sure it’s appealing. Unfortunately, many dental issues can prevent you from having your ideal smile, from gapped teeth to missing teeth. The good news is that there are ways to improve the look of your smile— and you don’t have to spend a fortune to do it. Here are five inexpensive ways that you can improve your smile.
#1: Teeth Whitening
One of the easiest ways to improve your smile is by brushing and flossing regularly, but certain foods and drinks can leave stains on your teeth or just cause discoloration in general. Because of this, many people spend thousands of dollars on professional teeth whitening. The good news is that you can just spend a few extra dollars on whitening toothpaste and mouthwash that can be just as effective as a professional whitening treatment— in conjunction with limiting the amount of coffee and red wine you consume to prevent further teeth staining.
#2: Dental Bonding
Teeth whitening products take care of discolored teeth, but what about chipped, cracked, and broken teeth? Bonding is a relatively inexpensive dental procedure that can repair damaged teeth. Teeth can become damaged from poor dental habits, as well as from harsh impacts to the mouth. Damaged teeth aren’t considered a part of a beautiful smile in the majority of cultures, so many people want to have this problem corrected.
Dental bonding uses a composite resin to rebuild a chipped or broken tooth, and it can also fill cracked and gapped teeth. This resin is the same color as teeth, so it looks just like a natural tooth.
#3: Dental Implants
Even though dentistry has come a long way, millions of people still suffer from tooth loss. This can be the result of poor dental hygiene, genetic conditions, and even illnesses, such as COVID-19. Missing teeth can lead to a decreased quality of life, depending on which teeth and how many are missing. Fortunately, dental implants are an effective solution to tooth loss.
Dental implants are permanently fixed to the gums. Because it’s placed into the socket of the jawbone, it can take months to completely heal. However, dental implants have a 98% success rate, and they can improve your overall quality of life.
#4: Braces and Invisible Aligners
When it comes to misaligned teeth, metal braces and invisible aligners are two popular choices. For the past century, metal braces have been the most common way to straighten teeth, but invisible aligners have become more popular in the last two decades. However, not all teeth misalignments can be corrected with invisible aligners, so braces are a more viable option.
There are many different types of braces, but traditional metal braces are the most effective at correcting just about any type of misalignment of the teeth. They may not be the most discreet way to straighten teeth, but they are the most affordable option for braces.
#5: Snap-on Veneers
Traditional veneers can camouflage just about any type of dental issue, which is why many people want to get them. However, they’re the most expensive, costing more than $1,000 per veneer. Veneers are porcelain tooth-shaped pieces that are permanently adhered to the teeth once they’ve been shaved down. This is a relatively invasive procedure that can’t ever be reversed, although most people who get these types of veneers are okay with this.
Fortunately, there’s a significantly less invasive (and less expensive) alternative to traditional veneers: temporary, or snap-on veneers. These veneers don’t require a dental visit; all you need to do is order an impression kit to get veneers. They’re just as realistic-looking as traditional veneers, and you can eat, drink, and speak normally while wearing them.
Just keep in mind that none of these is a substitute for good dental hygiene. Taking proper care of your teeth is the best way to ensure that you don’t experience any further problems with your teeth. However, not everyone is perfect and dental issues still happen, but the majority of dental problems can be corrected with one or more of these listed above— along with proper dental hygiene since these procedures aren’t typically covered by dental insurance. Proper dental hygiene consists of brushing at least twice a day, flossing at least once a day, and also eating healthy while avoiding bad habits that can harm teeth.