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Dental negligence claims for smile makeovers

When your dentist proposes a ‘smile makeover’, what they have in mind is making changes to the appearance of your smile so that it is more attractive for you and other people to look at. A smile makeover is not something which improves the health of the teeth, nor does it address any dental disease. In fact, some of the treatments used by some dentists to ‘improve’ patients’ smiles actually weaken the teeth involved and make their future less secure.

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What is the process of a smile makeover?

Your dentist may suggest a mix of the various different cosmetic dental treatments available in order to make changes to your smile, and so to get an idea of what may be involved before you agree to treatment, we suggest that you should read up about the individual procedures. Suggestions could include crowns, porcelain veneers, invisible braces, cosmetic bonding and tooth whitening.

What can go wrong with a smile makeover?

Like with any dental treatment, certain risks are involved with the various elements of a smile makeover and should be explained before any procedure commences.

One thing that you should bear in mind is that unfortunately, your dentist’s view of what amounts to an improved smile may not match your view. Can you be certain that you will end up looking better from your perspective, or will it just be your dentist at the end of the day who thinks things have been improved?

Additionally, you are not guaranteed to like the end result of your dentist’s work once your smile has been altered, so it’s important to understand the consequences regarding any refunds or whether treatment can be offered in order to return your teeth their original state. It’s also possible that your dentist will show you images of people’s mouth and indicate that this is what you will achieve; however, it’s not guaranteed that that the same look can be achieved given the technical constraints of the dental treatments available and the specific characteristics of your mouth and appearance.

A limited and reversible smile makeover is something which many family dentists will be happy to discuss with you. However, the choice of which dentist you use to provide an extensive smile makeover should be considered very carefully. We recommend that this treatment is not carried out unless it has been considered and recommended by a specialist restorative dentist, one who is recognised as such by the General Dental Council (GDC).

In some cases, smile makeovers do not go to plan. There can be a number of reasons for that. You may have been caused injury during the procedure, or even find that you have been caused additional problems after the treatment was completed. Other issues include:

How long do smile makeovers last?

Has your dentist provided a guarantee that states whether your smile makeover will last? Individual circumstances in relation to your mouth will impact on how long your results will last for, but this kind of cosmetic dentistry is unlikely to be a one-off treatment. By opting for procedures such as crowns and porcelain veneers, it’s likely you will be entering into a cycle of dental treatment for the rest of your life, which could therefore prove to be extremely costly in the long run.

Are smile makeovers suitable for everyone?

A smile makeover which is carried out on a limited and reversible level can be an excellent option if you are looking for ways to improve the appearance of your smile. However, if you are planning on getting permanent treatment, which will be costly, we would recommend that you spend a considerable amount of time deciding whether it’s the right option for you. As smile makeovers are considered cosmetic dentistry, it’s unlikely that any of the treatments will be available through the NHS, so you will need to pay for private dentistry. Ensure that you are aware of the full costs of all procedures before you agree a plan for them to be carried out.

What kinds of treatments are involved in smile makeovers?

Some of the more common procedures included in smile makeovers are dental veneers, teeth whitening, dental implants and composite bonding. It might also include longer term treatments, such as aligning teeth or reducing gaps between teeth with adult braces. In order to predict what the final results of a smile makeover might look like, it’s important to take into consideration things like your skin tone, hair colour and facial appearance.

How much does a smile makeover cost?

As this type of dental treatment is cosmetic in nature, these procedures are not usually available on the NHS. Therefore, you will need to pay for private treatment if you want these procedures to be carried out. The cost of a smile makeover can depend on a number of factors, including:

  • The specific procedures involved in your own bespoke smile makeover
  • The seniority of the dentist carrying out the procedures
  • The part of the country you are being treated in.

How much does it cost to bring a smile makeover compensation claim?

If you choose the Dental Law Partnership to help you bring a claim for negligence against your dentist, most cases are eligible for a no win, no fee arrangement. This means that if your case is unsuccessful, you won’t need to pay any legal fees. If you win your case, a percentage of the compensation awarded is used to pay legal costs. This can be discussed in more detail when you get in touch about your potential smile makeover compensation claim.

What should I do if I think I might have a dental negligence claim for my smile makeover?

If you think that your dentist has badly let you down in relation to a smile makeover, or another type of dental treatment, and you have been left with pain, further treatment being necessary or financial loss as a result, you might be eligible to make a claim. The first thing to do is to contact experts in dental negligence law, such as the Dental Law Partnership, to discuss the circumstances of your case and see if you have a valid claim. The next steps can be discussed at this point, and the process fully explained. You can see more about the process of making a dental negligence claim here.

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