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Things to Consider Before Making a Major Dental Change


We understand embarking on a major dental change is a big decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. You might have different concerns than other patients, but you all share one thing in common:

There’s something about your smile that you wish could be enhanced. 

The good news is, if you’re reading this, you’re not alone. More than half of all Americans want their teeth to be different, and cosmetic dentistry exists to help you find the enhancements you’re looking for.  

We want to help you think through this decision so you can enjoy your smile and experience all the benefits that come with that. Below, we’ll respond to some common misconceptions we hear and give you the tools you need to pick a great dentist you can trust for your cosmetic changes.

Debunking Common Misconceptions 

Our team has been working to enhance smiles for decades. We’ve heard just about every objection you can think of that causes people to forego the help that’s right in front of them. 

We figured that we’d deal with these misconceptions by addressing them head-on and showing how there’s no reason to avoid the smile you want any longer. 

It is impossible to afford it.

For many people, cosmetic dentistry seems like a luxury that’s way out of their price range. It’s sometimes not covered by insurance, so it just gets pushed aside as an impossibility. 

Patients sometimes put their cosmetic dentistry procedure in the “nice-to-have” category rather than the “need-to-have,” but there’s no real reason to draw that distinction. 

There’s more to having a smile you love than liking the way you look. People who enjoy their own smiles often feel confident, happier, and self-assured. The benefits exist, and they’re well worth the price. 

You also don’t have to write a check for the full amount in one sitting. Many patients finance their procedures, use an HSA, or work with a dentist who offers flexible payments. Whatever you decide, remember that you’re getting more than just a simple procedure. You’re gaining a new way of life.  

It all needs to be done at once.

Patients sometimes assume that they need to block off a full day and get a full dental makeover in one sitting, but that’s not the case at all. 

At Koval & Koval, we do as much or as little as our patients want. We don’t believe in rushing you along. Instead, we want you to take your time and make an informed decision that will make you happy in the long term. 

You can think of this procedure sort of like remodeling a home. You don’t need to retile the bathroom, change the kitchen counter, and put in a pool all at once. You can make little changes over a longer period of time to make sure you end up with what you want without one large disruption.

It will hurt too bad.

Unfortunately, dentistry is still often associated with pain for many patients. This can make the idea of a major cosmetic change seem daunting, but modern technology has made it so patients feel a lot less discomfort in their procedures. 

Our practice uses state-of-the-art technology for our procedures to increase precision and decrease discomfort. We’ve invested heavily into laser dentistry so that our patients could have a more pleasant experience overall and stop letting antiquated pain myths get in the way of their perfect smile. 

It won’t really change that much.

In cosmetic dentistry, a little goes a long way. You may not think you can arrive at your dream smile, but even a few minor adjustments can alter the way you see yourself, giving you a level of confidence you didn’t know you were missing.

You can see evidence of these changes in our before and after gallery. You’ll find that while there are obvious differences, the changes themselves look completely natural. Dr. Koval works hard to make adjustments that will always make your smile like yours. 

She also understands that a smile is more about aesthetics. There’s a functional element that changes, too, and she takes that into consideration while working with you to plan your procedure. 

It’s going to look bad. 

There’s some level of risk involved in any major decision, and even the most confident patients still have that little voice in their head asking “what if it doesn’t go the way I planned?” 

The best way to combat that fear is to find a reliable dentist you can trust to get the job done. The next section will give you some tips for how to do just that.

Questions for Evaluating Potential Cosmetic Dentists 

Finding a dentist you can trust for your major dental change can be daunting, but taking the time to do so will help you ensure you get the results you want. 

The following four questions will give you a framework for evaluating cosmetic dentists so you can pick the best one for you. 

How do their reviews look?

It’s one thing for a dentist to speak highly of themselves, but you’ll learn more from what other people have to say. 

Most practices will have reviews on Google or Yelp or other similar services. Some, like our own practice, list them on their website

Reviews give you a chance to hear about patients’ experiences, especially if you look beyond star ratings. Read the reviews and look for comments about 

  • The service they received
  • How the dentist treated them and their ideas
  • The culture of the office itself (staff, assistants, etc)
  • The result they ended up with.

Do they have good before and after photos?

There’s that old cliche about a picture being worth a thousand words. That’s extra true when it comes to cosmetic dentistry. 

Top dentists will be proud enough of their work to display it, making it easy for potential clients to find them. As with the reviews, however, simple scanning the photos won’t do. You’ll be able to better evaluate the dentist’s work if you know what to look for. 

Here are some of the most important pieces:

  • Consistency within the teeth in terms of color and size
  • An unnoticeable difference between what is natural and what has work done
  • Unique solutions from person to person instead of a clear one-size-fits-all approach
  • Obvious improvement from before to after.   

Are they keeping up with the latest technology?

It’s not a great sign if your dentist still uses antiquated tools. Not only will it probably cause you greater discomfort; it also indicates that they have grown stagnant in their practice. 

This doesn’t mean dentists need to update their equipment every year necessarily, but you want to find someone who is always looking to provide a better experience for their patients. A willingness to upgrade their technology shows that they’re on top of the latest trends and still want to improve their practice, even if they’re already pretty impressive. 

Do they look for opportunities to learn?

Dentistry is hardly a static industry. Like any other science, innovations and adaptation abound. Because of this, the most successful dentists never stop learning. They take continuing education courses, get trained in certain methods, or get certificates beyond their original credentials. 

Having the answer to these questions will give you a better sense of the dentist you’re dealing with. If they check all the boxes, you can rest assured that they are a trustworthy source to make changes that will leave you happy with the changes you receive. 

Next Steps

Once you’ve corrected the misconceptions and answered the evaluative questions, you’re ready to book an appointment with a trustworthy dentist. 

Our own practice prides itself on its service and commitment to enhancing our patients' smiles. Dr. Koval leads with integrity and is constantly looking for ways to provide the best experience possible. She’s always learning and always growing, so that she can better serve the people who walk in our doors.

If you’re ready to make the leap with a major dental change, or if you’re still unsure about the commitment, you can book a complimentary consultation where we can talk through all the details to make sure you get the smile you’ve always wanted. 

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