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Looking Younger With Cosmetic Dentistry

You know the old adage about an apple a day, but does smiling help keep the years at bay?

A study published in the journal Psychology and Aging found that people judged smiling happy faces as being younger than faces showing neutral expressions or negative emotions. Smiling creates natural smile or laugh wrinkles that may disguise other signs of aging. Dentists add that teeth can show age too as lifestyle and health habits can start to make an impact after age 30. Keeping your teeth in good shape and free from discoloration will give your smile a more youthful appearance. So can the dentist help you look younger? Yes! Here are some tips that will help you beat back the clock.

1. Reshape or enhance your smile teeth
People first notice the teeth that show when you smile, and for some people that can be quite a few. Over time, normal use can take a toll on those teeth with wear patterns, tooth decay, chips or cracks showing up. Good cosmetic dentists are artists that can beautify your smile using common dental procedures.
Tooth contouring and shaping – polishing edges and angles to remove small imperfections.
Dental bonding – tooth-colored resins fill in gaps and chips and cover stains
Porcelain veneers and crowns – cover or replace some of your tooth’s natural structure to strengthen and restore appearance.
On the flip side of enhancing your smile teeth is making sure that your back teeth are healthy and able to support your front teeth. Your back teeth serve as “stoppers” when you bite down so forces are distributed more evenly rather than just to your front teeth. They also help fill out your face so you don’t have a sunken older look.

2. Whiten your teeth
Teeth naturally yellow with age and also can become discolored from smoking and dietary habits, such as drinking coffee, tea, red wine and highly colored foods. However, teeth that are too white look a little much to many people. To estimate your natural tooth color, one rule of thumb is that they are no whiter than the whites of your eyes.

Read our other posts about tooth whitening or visit our website to learn more about your whitening options. Or take advantage of our special tooth whitening offer for in-office whitening.

3. Replace old silver fillings
Old mercury fillings, or amalgam, have been used for decades to repair cavities. Over time, metal amalgams contract and expand from hot and cold food/drinks and cause micro-fractures in the tooth. Additionally, the metal can cause a “tattoo” of the tooth – that gray color often seen leaching through from large amalgam fillings. Replacing amalgam fillings with tooth-colored resin or porcelain fillings can brighten your smile and help stop further breakdown.

4. Reduce wrinkles
The skin around your mouth can help give away your age. Use moisturizer and lipstick or gloss with sunscreen for skin protection. Smoking is a definite builder of mouth wrinkles, as well as the other negative impacts it has on health. Stop smoking and avoid second-hand smoke as well. Your skin will also benefit from eating a healthy diet rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. And be sure to drink enough water!

Contact us if you’d like to learn more about our excellent cosmetic dentists or schedule a smile consultation. At New Hampshire Center for Comprehensive Dentistry we’re here to help keep your teeth and smile looking as young and healthy as you feel!