Restorative dentistry is the term we use to explain how we replace missing or damaged teeth, and the procedures and treatment options that this may include. From one-day crowns via CEREC® technology to tooth-colored fillings, silver amalgam fillings, inlays, onlays, fixed bridges, dentures & more, we’re here to bring back your natural smile & to help you prevent future oral health issues.
Tooth Colored Fillings
Also called composite resins, these are placed directly into the tooth immediately after the decay is removed. When they’re put into the tooth, they’re like putty or paste and once the dentist has properly shaped the material, it is hardened by the use of a special light. Tooth colored fillings come in a variety of tooth-like colors or shades and can be made to match the color of almost any tooth. They are “bonded” into the tooth, which essentially means that they adhere to your tooth to help make your tooth stronger.
These were once the standard filling material used in dental offices worldwide. Even though most people now prefer tooth colored fillings, there are situations in which silver amalgam is the appropriate choice. The material is metallic by nature and contains a combination of metals in different proportions. When the powder form of this metal combination is mixed with mercury, it becomes softened and can be packed into the cavity that has been created by removing the decay. While it is still soft, the dentist shapes the material to “restore” the proper size and shape of the tooth. After a few minutes, the material hardens on its own.
These are restorations that are hardened and shaped before they go into your tooth. This process involves taking an impression of your tooth and its neighboring teeth after the decay has been removed. The materials available for this process are gold, composite resin and ceramic. They offer a stronger, longer lasting alternative to filling materials and are cemented (glued) or bonded into the tooth once they are properly fitted.
These are just a larger version of inlays. They simply restore a larger section of the tooth.
More commonly referred to as “caps”, these are restorations that encircle your entire tooth as opposed to restoring just a section of it, which is what fillings, inlays, and onlays do. The materials and the processes used are the same as for inlays and onlays. If we feel that a crown is the best option for your oral health, we’ll discuss this with you during your visit and clearly explain why we’re recommending this solution.
These are used to replace one or more missing teeth. Crowns are made for the teeth on either side of the missing tooth or teeth. Special crowns called “pontics” are made specifically for the missing teeth and then all of the crowns are connected into one piece and cemented in place. Once the bridge is cemented in place, it is not removable and that’s why it’s called “fixed”.
There are both full and partial denture options. Dentures are used to replace missing teeth just like fixed bridges, but they ARE removable. Partial dentures are for when you’re missing only a few teeth; whereas full dentures are required when all of the teeth in either your upper or lower jaw are missing.
If there is a restorative dentistry procedure that you don’t see listed on this page or if you have questions about the restorative treatment options listed above, we’ve got answers. Just give us a call or ask a question and we’ll happily assist you!
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