How is Tooth Colour Determined in Smile Design?
One of the most important elements in prosthetic dental applications is the selection of the right tooth colour. Patients pay particular attention to the colour of their teeth and therefore it can be difficult to match an artificial material with natural tooth structure.
Colour matching with a systematic approach provides accuracy, consistency, predictable results, which are absolutely important in dentistry.
If all of your visible teeth will not be covered with aesthetic dental veneers, it is extremely important that the colour of the teeth to be made is compatible with your natural tooth colours. Before tooth colour selection, if there are serious and easily passable stains on the tooth surfaces, they should be cleaned.
Although every dentist has their own system for determining tooth colour, there is a common method that can be used. This method uses a colour guide as a reference point for tooth comparison. A colour guide has four main categories for comparison based on different colour regions.
The first category, A, shows a colour scale ranging from white to reddish brown. The next category, B, indicates another colour scale ranging from white to reddish yellow. Category C includes colours ranging from white to grey, and finally, category D includes a colour scale ranging from white to reddish grey.
Within these categories, there are different tones ranging from dark to light. The variation of colours depends on the colour guide used. For example, some tint guides may have only four tints per category, while others may have more tints. Using a four-shade guide, most people have A3 colored teeth, which means they’re a little reddish brown. This average is considered natural tooth colour.
However, many people today want their teeth to look whiter and brighter and want their A3 teeth to improve in colour. When performing whitening treatments, many people request that their teeth be brought to B1 level. Colour B1 is generally considered to be the whitest colour, but this is not the case.
Colour B1 was the whitest colour for natural teeth. Now, with the introduction of whitening products, the once natural colour has become much lighter. There are now even lighter colours than the lightest shade B1. These colours are often referred to as Hollywood colours because they are whiter than naturally occurring teeth.
What colour of teeth fits me?
The most important point in choosing a colour is your facial features, skin tone, remaining natural teeth and even your age. For example, if a few teeth are being restored, it is very important that the dentures match the colour of your main teeth. Making it in a different colour will cause the restoration to lose its naturalness.
In addition, your age also plays a role in prosthetic aesthetics. As we age, our teeth naturally darken. A mature person with a mouth full of white teeth often looks like he’s wearing a denture. However, there is a wide variety of natural-looking options, and your dentist will help you choose a tooth shade that is bright and light enough to restore a pleasant smile.
Your dentist will ask for feedback on the look you want to help you choose your ideal tooth colour. You may want to bring a picture of yourself that accentuates your smile. If you already wear a denture, you can present observations that you or others have made about your teeth. Such feedback will help inform your dentist about your expectations for how you want your denture to look.
During your trial appointment, you will see how it will look when you put on your final denture. This will give you the best opportunity to evaluate how you will look with your chosen tooth colour. The teeth at this point are held with wax and can be replaced if you think it is not the right colour. However, most patients find that they are satisfied with the colour of their chosen teeth with the help of their dentist at trial appointments.