How long does cosmetic dentistry last?

Cosmetic Dentistry can give you the beautiful smile you have always wanted. An investment that goes a long way to improving your overall oral health. Leaving a lasting impression for many years to come. But how many years? Just how long does cosmetic dentistry last?

We are asked this question often and it’s hard to give a definitive answer. There are many different treatment options to choose from with some lasting longer than others. The length of treatment also varies from patient to patient as lifestyle choices can significantly affect how long the treatment will last. In this blog post, we will look at some of the popular cosmetic treatments. Helping to provide an answer for “How long does cosmetic dentistry last?”.

Maintain a good standard of oral hygiene

How long cosmetic dentistry lasts is hugely influenced by the patient. Although there is a range of different treatment options available, they all have a similarity in aftercare…maintaining a good standard of oral hygiene.

To ensure your teeth, gums and mouth remain healthy it’s important to;

  • Brush twice daily
  • Floss daily
  • Pay regular visits to your dentist and hygienist
  • Quit smoking
  • Limit sugary and acidic foods

Although focused on improving the look of a person’s smile, many cosmetic dentistry treatments come with a wide range of health benefits. From strengthening a badly decayed tooth to filling a gap in a person’s mouth, oral hygiene is pivotal for successful treatment.

Teeth Whitening – Lasting 6 months to three years

Teeth whitening is a type of cosmetic dentistry which aims to improve the colour of a patient’s teeth. Whitening can last anywhere from 6 months to three years. However, the majority of patients will be required to visit their dentist within a year of starting treatment.

Also referred to as home bleaching, the lasting effects of teeth whitening greatly depend on an individual’s oral hygiene. A person’s lifestyle choices can also largely affect how long treatment will last.

Smokers and heavy tea and coffee drinkers are less likely to see the long-lasting effects which can be achieved from teeth whitening. One of the main causes of teeth losing their natural white colour is due to chromophore molecules, chemicals found in food which cause discolouration of the teeth.

Composite Bonding – Lasts 8 to 15 years

A treatment option that continues to grow in popularity, direct composite bonding covers a wide range of cosmetic complaints. And with a life expectancy of 8 to 15 years, it’s clear to why so many people are opting for this treatment option.

Designed to be as durable as the natural teeth, composite bonding can be used to repair decayed, damaged or discoloured teeth. Other uses include improving the shape of a tooth and closing gaps between the teeth.

Veneers – Lasting up to 15 years

Commonly used to reshape, resize or change the colour of a patient’s teeth, veneers can last up to 15 years. Typically used on the front teeth which are visible when a patient is smiling or talking, veneers are made from strong ceramic glass.

Unlike the natural teeth, veneers are not porous meaning chromophore molecules from foods will not stain veneers the way they would the natural teeth. However, this does not mean they do not need cleaning. Neglecting to do so can result in tooth decay and gum disease.

Crowns – Lasting up to 15 years

Just like veneers, crowns are extremely durable and with the correct care can last up to 15 years before they need replacing. When a tooth is extensively damaged and a traditional filling or veneer will not work a crown will be used. Not only fixing the patients cosmetic complaint but strengthing the broken tooth for many years to come.

Aftercare for a crown will consist of continuing a daily routine of brushing and flossing. However, it’s important to ensure you pay close attention to the crown to avoid plaque build-up and further decay.

Short term Orthodontics – Lasts a Lifetime

Short term Orthodontics (STO) is a treatment option used to straighten, move or realign a person’s teeth. With the correct care and maintenance, once treatment has been completed, the effects generally last a lifetime.

Short term Orthodontics focuses solely on correcting a patient’s cosmetic complaint. Whereas traditional orthodontics also corrects problems with a person’s bite. The treatment typically takes 6 months to complete and the results should last the rest of your life providing your care and maintain your teeth correctly.

Aftercare is critical to ensuring your teeth retain their new, straight position. For this reason, all patients are required to wear a retainer for a short time after the brace has been removed. Failure to do so can result in the teeth moving out of position, resulting in further treatment being required. Using Six Month Smiles® we can treat patients who have started orthodontic treatment in the past but not completed.

Dental Implants – Lasts from 20 to 30 years

Dental implants are often considered the best and most effective way to replace a missing tooth or teeth. Creating an extremely natural look, dental implants can last up to 30 years with the correct care and maintenance.

Inserted directly into a patient’s jawbone, dental implants are designed to fully replicate the function of the natural tooth.

Find out more

Cosmetic dentistry is a long term investment that can drastically improve your health and wellbeing. Although it’s hard to give an exact answer to how long does cosmetic dentistry lasts, we do know with the correct care and maintenance your new smile can last for many years.

If you would like to explore your options further or have any questions regarding the services we offer why not book in for a consultation today and discover how we can create a smile makeover plan unique to your personal needs.

About the author

Author

Jason Smithson is an internationally renowned cosmetic and reconstructive dentist formerly of London’s Harley Street Medical District, he is now based in St Agnes, Cornwall where he offers dentistry, dental-education and medico-legal expert witness services. World-class crowns, veneers and direct composite resin artistry are delivered with uncompromising standards bespoke to the patient’s individual requirements. He is considered to be the ‘Dentist’s Dentist’ and regularly treats other dentists; many of whom travel from throughout the UK to see him. Dr Smithson is an ‘In Demand’ presenter and is perhaps the most prolific in the UK. He is considered by his peers to be an authority on aesthetic dentistry and has presented to audiences on every continent over the past 10 years. He is a true innovator and pioneered the use of Dental Operating Microscope in teaching Direct Resin Artistry to other dentists in the UK; he is the author of numerous articles and a book on crowns in aesthetic dentistry.

Connect with Jason Smithson on LinkedIn.

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What our Clients say

“The minute I met Martin, I just knew he was so calm and relaxing. So then we had a discussion and Martin said what he could do and it had to be what our pocket could afford as well and we went ahead with it. The experience I had at this dentist was unbelievable, it was a journey I loved every minute of.”


Client: Dee
Treatment: Dental Implants

“There’s always smiling, handshakes, hugs and plenty of tea and coffee. They looked after my husband who was there for the day. They do the sedation and Hayley looked after me. Obviously I was unaware of exactly what they were doing, but they always make you feel so comfortable. Although you’re nervous, I don’t think I could’ve gone and got the same treatment anywhere else.”


Client: Carolyn
Treatment: Dental Implants

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