The Options of Restorative Dentistry
Providing patients the opportunity to replace substantially broken, severely infected, or missing teeth altogether, restorative dentistry is an amazing feat of the dental industry. As each smile and its situation are completely unique, there stand a plethora of options capable of restoring almost any smile; transforming its look, function, and your quality of everyday life in the process!
Let’s dive into what sets each option apart from the others, taking a look into their intended design and the ideal circumstances for their application.
In terms of dentistry, a crown is a broad term. As they are extremely effective tools, crowns lend themselves to a number of other restorative procedures where they play a substantial role.
In terms of the crown itself, they pose as artificial tooth caps which are placed atop a tooth’s surface to blend in amongst the rest of the natural smile. These are typically implemented to remedy a tooth that’s succumb to damage, but not substantially enough that it has to be uprooted and extracted entirely.
Once the tooth is shaved down to a fraction of its former size, it may now welcome the crown atop with a snug fit. Crafted from resilient materials such as porcelain or resin, these artificial caps are bonded into your smile and will last upwards of 15 years if properly tended to.
The restorative capabilities of bridges are impressive, as they’re designed to specifically restore multiple adjacent teeth in one conjoined process. If you’ve found yourself with substantial tooth damage impacting two or more teeth, worry not!
Bridges typically consist of a pontic in the middle surrounded by crowns on either side. The middle pontic sits atop the gums to fulfill an empty spot, with the crowns on either side being connected and anchored onto the surface of the neighboring teeth through the typical aforementioned crown process.
Bridges, similar to crowns, have multiple purposes and can be utilized alongside other procedures such as implants too.
Perhaps the most impressive restorative procedure, dental implants consist of a titanium post which is drilled into the jawbone. Atop that, a crown is placed; giving the illusion of a natural tooth with a sense functionality and stability that far exceeds it. These procedures are near permanent, and may last upwards of 25 years if cared for properly.
Dental implants can only be performed on candidates with a healthy enough jawbone density and demand an extraction of the existing tooth in the process.
As opposed to implants, dentures are crafted to fit within the natural grooves of the mouth to grant a flexible solution to patients with swaths of missing teeth, as they can be removed and reinserted throughout the day.
While these false teeth are still crafted with capable materials, they are more delicate and susceptible to damage and misplacement due to their design and constant contact with the outside environment. On the bright side, they have restored the appearance and alleviated the dysfunction of empty smiles for decades while remaining affordable.
Its given name is relatively self-explanatory, as fillings consist of specialized dental materials which are used to restrengthen the structure of a damaged tooth. Fillings are often synonymous with cavities, as the holes they leave behind are solved through their implementation.
However, many fillings are used to also restore the surface of teeth which have suffered large cracks or chips throughout their structure! Impressively sealing up any inconsistency and keeping the structural integrity of the tooth intact, opposed to the placement of crowns or requiring the tooth the be extracted for an implant.