Cosmetic dentistry is normally concerned with any form of dental procedure that helps in enhancing the appearance, and sometimes the functionality, of an individual's teeth, gums and bite. Cosmetic dentistry involves the following:
• Adding a specific dental material to existing teeth or gums in order to provide an aesthetic appeal and pleasing appearance. For instance porcelain veneers, tooth crowns, gum grafts, bonding etc.
• Extracting a portion of the tooth structure or the entire tooth or making a surgical incision on the gums.
• Superficial work on the teeth and gums without the need of adding any dental material or structure. For instance, teeth bleaching, de pigmentation of the gums, bleaching etc.
• Aligning of crooked teeth in order to improve the appearance of the face. For example, orthodontics.
A cosmetic dentist has to undergo formal training and need accreditation by the American Dental Association to become a practising dentist. There is a minimum of 2 to 3 years rigorous dental education program after graduating from a dental school, in order to qualify as a cosmetic dentist. These certifications further leads to approval by the board of the American Dental Association.
The American Academy Of Cosmetic Dentistry is considered to be the largest dental organisation in the world, on an international level, and comprises dentists as well as technicians working in the field of cosmetic dentistry. Established in 1984, the American Academy Of Cosmetic Dentistry covers more than 70 countries around the world and has over 7000 members in the United States alone.
The American Society For Dental Aesthetics was founded in 1976, with the purpose of expanding dental education to dentists concerning the latest breakthroughs in restorative techniques and aesthetic procedures, as and when available.