Is your teen overly conscious about how their teeth look? Especially if the teeth are not seemingly perfect? If you’re a teen and your teeth are colored, chipped, deformed, crooked, or have some missing teeth, you can restore your perfect smile through cosmetic dentistry. In this teen cosmetic dentistry guide, we tell you what you need to know about these procedures, including some methods of correcting your teeth. Let’s first explain cosmetic dentistry.

What Is Cosmetic Dentistry?

According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, cosmetic dentistry is a practice that aims to create a positive change to an individual’s teeth and smile. It involves dental work to improve appearance as well as a wide range of procedures. Despite the name, cosmetic dentistry services are not all about appearance. The effects of the procedures or dental works go beyond aesthetics to include helping patients with specific dental conditions. Orthodontic treatments, which include modern aligners, Lightforce braces, traditional braces, and much more, are also considered to be part of cosmetic dentistry.

teen cosmetic dentistry guide

Differences Between Cosmetic and General Dentistry

Overall, it may be argued that there are no major differences between cosmetic and general dentistry. After all, they are all done by people who have a DMD or DDS degree. Although you may think that regular dentists can only do things like tooth extractions and cavity filling, they can actually also perform dental cosmetic procedures.

Taking your teen to general dentists doesn’t mean that only things like tooth pain will be handled, the doctor may recommend some cosmetic procedures. Similarly, cosmetic dentists may have to perform general dental procedures before the actual cosmetic procedures. For example, the dentist may need to extract or clean certain teeth before embarking on the cosmetic procedure.

While there are some minor differences between cosmetic and general dentistry, the functions sometimes overlap. For example, when your teen has their decaying tooth extracted, there might be a need to fill the gap to restore his/her smile. Since they have the same qualifications, they can perform all types of procedures, be it general or cosmetic.

Is Cosmetic Dentistry Safe for Teens?

One of the questions you might be asking yourself is whether your teenager is too young for cosmetic dentistry. Well, there is no stage of life when people are more concerned about how they look than teenagerhood. There you have it, your child might need their teeth corrected if you want them to have high self-esteem and confidence.

This teen cosmetic dentistry guide, however, will caution that not all cosmetic dentistry procedures are appropriate for children and teens. Appropriate treatments for your teen or child include dental implants, gum contouring or crown lengthening, tooth bonding, teeth whitening, and veneers.

Some procedures may discourage children from properly taking care of their teeth. For example, some teens would think that it’s enough to have their teeth whitened once a year and there is no need for regular brushing and flossing. This is why teeth whitening is only recommended for teens or children who have always had discolored or yellow teeth. In addition, implants should only be done to children whose skeletal development is complete to avoid bone damage.

Our teen cosmetic dentistry guide covers finding the right dentist

Choosing the Right Dentist

One of the most important tips you should pick from this teen cosmetic dentistry guide is how to choose the right dentist. Remember, the mouth and teeth are sensitive parts of the body, and you want them handled by experts with the right skills and experience. For example, if your teen has decided they’re going for implants, you should have it done by an expert in implant dentistry.

Family members and friends can give you recommendations on the best dentists in town. These would be professionals your friends or family members have had experience with and can vouch for them. You should establish the credibility of the dentist. Do they have the right license and education? You can check out this information online or by visiting their dental office.

Besides their qualifications, you also want to check their years of experience. Some procedures are too sensitive to be done by fresh graduates with no supervision from a senior dentist. Furthermore, experienced professionals would have all the medical equipment and resources needed for successful procedures. Therefore, a good dentist is expected to have access to the latest or advanced technology in their field. Some of the modern technologies you should ask for include digital X-rays, intraoral cameras, chairside monitors, and a dental laser.

Types of Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures for Teens

We have already talked about some of the ideal cosmetic dental procedures that are appropriate for teens and children. But how do you choose the right procedure for the child? As expected, the best person to advise you on this would be your cosmetic dentist. You and your child may also have your own preferences.

The procedures can be as simple as teeth whitening to as complex as having implants. Choose your preferred dental service based on your needs. For example, if you’ve colored teeth, teeth whitening is the solution. However, some problems may need a combination of procedures or solutions. It all depends on your needs and goals for your teeth.

One of the important factors to consider when choosing the right procedure is the current condition of your teen’s oral health. This teen cosmetic dentistry guide advises that if the teeth and mouth are in perfect condition, there is no need for any procedures. If there is a need for specific procedures, certain conditions must still be met. For example, patients with bone loss or gum disease cannot have implants.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening should only be done if you’re sure all of your child’s teeth are permanent. You should also know about the teeth whitening options that are available for your teen. Common options include whitening strips, whitening toothpaste, teeth whitening gels and trays, and in office professional teeth bleaching. The focus of this teen cosmetic dentistry guide is on the last option – professional teeth bleaching.

Only professional teeth bleaching performed by a cosmetic dentist would give you long-lasting results. The doctor may use a special medical laser to activate specific whitening gels for better results. Now let’s talk about the teeth whitening products we’ve mentioned.

Tooth whitening toothpaste can be used to remove stains. The special chemicals in the toothpaste offer additional stain removal effects. Tooth whitening gels and strips can be applied directly to the teeth using a thin strip or a brush. You should apply it 1-2 times a day for about 2 weeks. Custom whitening trays can also be made by your dentist.


Have you ever heard of dental veneers? Veneers are custom-made shells that are on the front surfaces of your teeth. As you’d already imagine, veneers are used to conceal defects like cracks, stains, and chips.

Dental veneers can be used by anyone, including teens who want to enhance the appearance of their smile. As one of the reliable cosmetic restoration products, these veneers will hide your deformities and instead give you a better smile. One of the key points to note in this teen cosmetic dentistry guide is that veneers should only be used if you don’t have gum disease or extensive cavities.

There are different types of veneers you can use. They include porcelain veneers, composite veneers, removable veneers, and no-prep veneers. Composite veneers are used to hide mild cosmetic issues, while porcelain veneers can be used on a wide number of cosmetic issues. No-prep veneers are the less invasive option. You can take out removable veneers anytime.


The sound of the word dental implant sounds scary, especially if you imagine it being done to your child. But as you’ve already learned from this teen cosmetic dentistry guide, this is a safe procedure for teens. In fact, this is a fairly painless procedure.

Implants are used to replace missing teeth. After going through that wisdom teeth extraction procedure, you don’t want that gap to linger for long, and an implant is the solution. However, because your child’s jaws and face may not be fully developed at the point when they have missing teeth, you should approach the dental implant course cautiously.

Do not subject your teen to implants if the jaws are still growing. It’s difficult to tell if your teen’s jaw is fully developed. Like in any medical situation, the doctor will be the best person to advise on the appropriate solutions. The dentist can examine the jaw and conclude if it’s fully developed or not.

You may be asking what are the best alternatives if the doctor concludes that the jaw is not fully developed. One great alternative is dentures. Dentures are artificial teeth that you can remove from your mouth. The other great option for teens is bridges. Bridges consist of one or several artificial teeth attached to crowns. Bridges look natural and will not inhibit your teen from drinking, eating, smiling, or playing sports.

Dental Crowns

The name gives it all. Something that crowns your teeth. A dental crown is a cap that is placed on top of your teeth. These crowns are used to cover, protect, and restore the shape of your teeth. The dental crowns can be made of porcelain, metals, ceramics, and resin. Your teen may need dental crowns to restore a broken tooth, protect a weak tooth, cover a dental implant, hold a dental bridge in place, or cover severely discolored teeth.

One of the main benefits of dental crowns is that they can prevent further damage. If you don’t want to find yourself in situations where you urgently need the attention of emergency dentists, these crowns can help by preventing infections and possible tooth extraction. Some of the best options when it comes to dental crowns for teens include zirconia, stainless steel, stainless steel with facings, and composite crowns.

Teeth Bonding

Teeth bonding is another great solution for people with chipped, crooked, or discolored teeth. Tooth bonding involves a procedure where your dentist applies tooth-colored resin material to the area or teeth that are affected. Tooth bonding aims to change the color, shape, or size of the teeth. Bonding is an ideal solution for concealing cracks or chips in your teeth, closing spaces and gaps inside your teeth, making your teeth look longer, and changing your teeth’s shape.

A typical dental bonding procedure is not painful. In fact, anesthesia is not even necessary in most cases. However, some people may experience temporary sensitivity after the procedure.

Taking Care of Your Teeth After the Procedure

You have successfully undergone your preferred cosmetic dental procedure, be it veneers or implants, and now you have the perfect smile. What next? This teen cosmetic dentistry guide emphasizes that you should continue taking good care of your teeth.

Follow your dentist’s advice on what to do and what you should avoid after the procedure. For example, you may be advised against eating hard foods. You may also be told to drink dark liquids such as black tea, coffee, and red wine in moderation. If you smoke, you should also consider stopping the habit. In addition, visit your dentist regularly for them to monitor results and administer any touch-up treatments that might be needed.

You should always maintain good oral hygiene habits to avoid finding yourself needing to have additional procedures. Remember, cosmetic dental treatment is not something that you should do frequently. Be careful when chewing with crowns, veneers, or bonded teeth. If you clench or grind your teeth, wear a nightguard.

Use specific toothpaste designed for dental restoration. Not all toothpastes are designed to be used with dental composites or dental veneers. Get the right toothpaste after the procedure to ensure you maintain the new smile.

Taking care of your children means ensuring you meet their personal needs. If your teen wants to have some corrections done on their teeth, you should guide them and look for a qualified cosmetic dentist to offer the services. We hope this teen cosmetic dentistry guide has been helpful and has given you enough insights on cosmetic dentistry for teenagers. Help your child regain their perfect smile and self-esteem through those cosmetic dental procedures.

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