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A 32-year-old member asked:

Is there any difference between aesthetic dentistry and cosmetic dentistry?

24 doctor answers46 doctors weighed in
Dr. Aaron Smith
Dentistry 23 years experience
Nope . . . .: In my opinion they are two different words to describe the same treatment. Every is a 'cosmetic' dentist these days. Aesthetic is a newer term that looks and sounds more sophisticated. Whichever way you call it, it is still enhancing the natural, visual and functional characteristics of the teeth to that which is more pleasing to the eye.
Dr. Barry Press
Plastic Surgery 45 years experience
No: Like aesthetic vs cosmetic surgery, there is no difference. These terms generally refer to procedures that are done on normal features in an attempt to make them better.
Dr. Michael Teitelbaum
Dentistry 33 years experience
Just a way to differentiate themselves
Jul 25, 2012
Dr. David Schleimer
A Verified Doctor commented
A US doctor answered Learn more
Semantic puffery! All dentists should aspire to cosmetic/aesthetic dentistry.
May 1, 2013
Dr. James Merrett
Dentistry 30 years experience
Aesthetic / Cosmetic: These two words are used synonymously. They are really addressing the same types of procedures. Some practioners prefer the aesthetic and some prefer the word cosmetic. However, if you search the internet with either one of these words you will find the same results.
Dr. Srijan Mehta
General Practice 15 years experience
Nope: There is no difference between the two and nor is it a specialty. It's important know that.
Dr. Gary Lederman
Dentistry 41 years experience
Either term will do: Call it what you want. I prefer the term appearance related entity. The truth is that pleasing esthetics in all of our procedures is now standard of care. Cosmetic dentistry implies care being done electively and for appearance enhancement. It becomes even more important that you find someone with specific training, experience and credentials. Discuss desired outcome, see examples of care.
Dr. Donald Nimz
Dentistry 44 years experience
No: They are the same. Most all general dentists do some cosmetic dentistry every day they practice.
Dr. Kaveh Niknia
Dentistry 23 years experience
No : Cosmetic dentistry and aesthetic dentistry have similar definitions.
Dr. John Thaler
Prosthodontics 42 years experience
No: The whole concept of appearance related dentistry is marketing. Neither aesthetic nor cosmetic dentistry exist as specialties (like oral surgery, orthodontics, prosthodontics, periodontics, endodontics, etc.). Many would have you believe they are specialists, but it does not exist. However, there are many dentists who have devoted their training and careers to this area and are excellent.
Dr. Robert Tupac
Specializes in Prosthodontics
No difference: All dentists strive to do work in an esthetic manner. Cosmetic dentistry sometimes refers to work done for the purpose of looks instead of just function.
Dr. Peter Certo
Dentistry 30 years experience
No: Basically two names for the same discipline of dentistry...Like cap and crown.
Dr. Max Arocha
Dentistry 19 years experience
Not at all: They are neither different nor are they recognize by the american dental association as a formal specialty area of dentistry.
Dr. Mark Venincasa
Dentistry - Cosmetic 36 years experience
It depends: We all have different definitions of the word reasonable. In the end patients should feel they did indeed get what they paid for in order to satisfy their definition of reasonable. The location of the dental office does factor in as does their expertise and that of their staff. But in the end it is each patient who decides if it was reasonably priced.
Dr. Mark Venincasa
Dentistry - Cosmetic 36 years experience
No...: Patients may enter into cosmetic with an already gummy smile. In some cases this can be very attractive. In other case a gummy smile may not be attractive. In those cases the gummy smile can be addressed in cosmetic dentistry to alter the gums in a way to enhance the tooth changes being made. In cosmetic dentistry the gums must be evaluated as well....
Dr. Mark Venincasa
Dentistry - Cosmetic 36 years experience
Consult first: In some cases the tooth needing the filling may have other conditions which require alteration to achieve a more cosmetic result. In consultation with your dentist, a plan can be made which will best sequence your care. That exam and consultation is important in determining what is best to pursue first.
Dr. Mark Venincasa
Dentistry - Cosmetic 36 years experience
Yes!: Depending on the severity of the periodontal disease, alternatives for cosmetic treatments can be considered. Most definitely yes; anyone can have cosmetic dentistry done.
Dr. Mark Venincasa
Dentistry - Cosmetic 36 years experience
It depends: Depending on the severity of periodontal disease, options can be considered for cosmetic dentistry. Anyone can pursue cosmetic dentistry!
Dr. April Ziegele
Cosmetic Dentistry 25 years experience
Not really: Both are focused on providing natural looking dentistry.
Dr. Joseph Mele
Plastic Surgery 33 years experience
No: Aesthetic and cosmetic mean the same thing. The words are used interchangeably, so any nuance has long been lost.
Dr. Dennis Cufone
Dentistry 33 years experience
Yes: Many dentists claim to be cosmetic but there is no real specialty in dentistry for this. Do your homework, ask your friends, and consult an organization such as the american academy of cosmetic dentistry (aacd). Members are generally more experienced.
Dr. David Schleimer
A Verified Doctor commented
A US doctor answered Learn more
There is no difference. They are semantic variations for the same concept. Neither is a recognized specialty by the American Dental Association, and organizations that favor one name over the other should make no claim as to the superiority of their membership. There all sorts of fancy "academies" for segments of procedural dentistry, but really, does anyone think they aspire to teach poor cosmetics or aesthetics in dental school? Dr. Cafone, you know specifically about the experience level of the people to whom you refer? Is this published somewhere in a refereed journal?
May 1, 2013
Dr. Dennis Cufone
Dentistry 33 years experience
Provided original answer
Wow Dave! You sure got off on a tangent! Your post makes little sense and if you're going to reference me, you could start by spelling my name right! AACD is a well respected association whose accredited members pass strict guidelines that take years to accomplish. Not just a weekend course. If you did your homework, they do publish a peer reviewed journal. While dental schools all teach good aesthetics, not everyone has the talent level to perform it. That's just life. Get one!
Jun 25, 2013
Dr. Ronald Achong
Oral &Maxillofacial Surgery 19 years experience
No : It is the same thing. Actually every general dentist and prosthodontis claim that they are cosmetic dentist. To determine if the dentist is really good, talk to others about the dentist, ask to see before and after pictures of patient treated by the office, look at the internet reviews, websites etc.
Dr. Glenn MacFarlane
Cosmetic Dentistry 37 years experience
NO: Cosmetic, esthetic and aesthetic are all the same. Just allows us dentists to have many academies using the different names focused on the same outcome....A pleasing natural looking smile!
Dr. Marielaina Perrone
Cosmetic Dentistry 27 years experience
They are...: One and the same. Just different names for the same thing.
Dr. I. Jay Freedman
Dentistry 44 years experience
Not really: Aesthetic and cosmetic are synonyms or words that can mean almost the same thing and are almost always interchangeable in a sentence. So I'd say that they mean nearly the same thing.
Dr. Robert Schwartz
Cosmetic Dentistry 42 years experience
Cosmetic-Aesthetic: The only difference I can think of is the spelling of the words. These are strictly terms that are used by dentists, usually by preference. There is no practical difference what you call yourself as a dentist. Hopefully you are being truthful as a dentist and know what you are doing. It is a large field and some dentists have taken considerable continuing education while others have not. Good Luck
Last updated Nov 22, 2020
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