Cosmetic dentistry is the practice of performing dental work to improve the appearance of the patient’s bite, or their teeth and gums. Usually, it is focused on realigning the teeth, or on fixing their color if they are stained.
A lot of dentists will refer to themselves as cosmetic dentists today, even if they do not have specific training in that regard. However, modern cosmetic dentistry is very sophisticated, so this sort of thing is frowned upon by the American Dental Association. Technically, the field of cosmetic dentistry is not a formal specialty, so dentists are not breaking the law to market themselves as such, regardless of their experience, but it makes sense for patients to check that the dentist they are thinking of working with has experience in the specific procedures that they are interested in.
Things like endodontics, periodontics and tooth whitening are all a part of the field of cosmetic dentistry, as are bonding, sculpting, and implants.
For the most part, if you are interested in minor procedures such as tooth whitening, it does make sense to go to a formally trained dentist to have it done. There are at-home tooth whitening kits, but using these can be dangerous and could lead to serious damage to your teeth and gums.
The phrase ‘Hollywood Smile’ has been coined and it seems that dentists in Hollywood really have advanced the dental profession.
If you need dental bridges fitted, be sure to go to a properly trained specialist that wil x-ray your jaw and check that you can accept the implants before fitting you for them. Fitting dental implants is a complex surgical procedure that takes a lot of time and that requires good after care. If the implants are not done correctly then they may not heal well in your jaw. There is also a genuine risk of infection during the period while the gums heal.