March 14, 2016
It appears that there is confusion on what Snap on Smile IS and what it is used for. It should be stated that it is NOT an alternative to porcelain veneers or composite bonding, but it CAN be part of the process. So how does it work?
A prototype is an early mock up or design of something that will be done “correctly” later. A “rough draft” of sorts. In THIS case, it would be a way to preview how a smile could look without doing anything irreversible. However, if material is simply sitting on TOP of the other teeth, it is not a TRUE representation of the final product. It normally feels bulky or the edges can feel rough to the lips or tongue. Final restorations (porcelain veneers or other longer lasting options) do not feel this way and should not be judged on how a snap on smile feels.
This treatment is simply a tooth coloured device that fits over (maybe even snaps) existing teeth, made from a resin that can LOOK like teeth or a new smile, but is NOT durable enough to function (chew) for very long. This is NOT a long term option (unless only used from time to time, not daily).
One popular use is for social events. Since the material is NOT durable, it is only brought out for social events that do not include eating. This allows all the candid photos for Facebook that a person may desire and may afford some self esteem for certain situations. Over time, the material will break down, so investing over and over again may be necessary.
Some use Snap on Smile for a temporary restoration. Dental implant treatment is a common use, as it takes time for dental implants to heal or fuse to the bone (osseointegration). During this time, Snap on Smile can be used to fill in the spaces where teeth are missing, and when the final restoration is placed the Snap on Smile is then discarded.
Perhaps implying deception is a bit harsh. A quick google search will show that many people did not get what they thought they were getting, so clearly a lack of communication is common. The bottom line is that people need to know what they are getting. In the right situations, Snap on Smileis a great option. The investment, when done with a skilled dentist and a skilled lab, will not be small, but often the fee can be applied (all of it or part of it) towards definitive treatment.
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