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Dental Restorations: Treatment and Types

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Dental Restorations: Treatment and Types 1

Dental restorations are great for anyone with a missing, decaying, weak, or fractured tooth. Sometimes the deterioration of a previous restoration may also demand a dental restoration procedure. 

Common examples of restorative procedures are crowns, fillings, bridges, dentures, and implants. To know which one would be best for you, you should talk to your dentist.

Being part of cosmetic dentistry, restorations can replace and sometimes completely restore your damaged/missing teeth. It’s also good if a part of your tooth is missing or a decaying structure needs removal to avoid further damage.

Types of Dental Restorations

Fillings

Dental fillings have to be probably the common form of restorative dental procedure. Dentists use them for replacing decayed parts of a tooth that are started causing cavity formation. 

However, the success of fillings can depend on the quality of the filing used and the dentist’s expertise. Quality fillings can easily last several years. And, they can look like the tooth is fully intact both in terms of functionality and appearance.

Dental Implants

An implant is like a small, anchoring metal post that is put into the place where the teeth have gone missing. They are often made of titanium. 

Crowns

A crown is a tooth-like cap that the dentists place over the tooth to restore it to its original strength, size, and appearance. It can also be used to fix partial dentures or cover dental implants. To make the crown fit perfectly around the tooth, your dentist will reduce the tooth to make it even.

The whole process can be rather long, often involving first getting an impression of the teeth which are materialized in the lab. In the meantime, the patient is given a temporary crown/filling. In many dental offices, due to better technology, it’s now possible to take an impression and fabricate it on the same day in a milling machine.

Dentures

Sometimes your teeth can go missing due to injury, decay, or gum diseases. In that case, you can get removable gum replacements in the form of dentures. Dentures are generally made using acrylic resin but other times they can have metal attachments as well.

In a patient where all teeth need replacement, your dentist would use complete dentures. In case some teeth are missing while some are perfectly intact, you can use partial dentures. Partial dentures are retained using a metal clasp that attaches to the surrounding teeth.

Dentures generally have three types – overdenture, immediate, and conventional. The first type aka conventional dentures takes a long time before they can be used. Your doctor will wait for months after the teeth removal until the surrounding tissues are perfectly healed before putting them in.

Immediate dentures are also removable. They can be used the same day as the teeth removal. An overdenture is for when the patient still has some tooth left. The denture holds on to the natural teeth.

Inlays and Onlays

Compared to dental fillings, inlays and Onlays are more prominent. They are, however, less prominent than crowns. If you have a damaged tooth that is too complicated for fillings but too minimal for a crown, then go with these. Both of them are created in a lab. In case of a damaged tooth cusp, onlays are used and in case of an intact one, inlays.

Composite Bonding

This is a modern way of restoring teeth. People often choose this as part of a cosmetic procedure. However, it’s equally good for rebuilding a lost tooth structure. 

The procedure involves a resin material matching the exact same color as the tooth to restore the tooth. Often, it’s also used for improving the tooth color.

The final results look well-polished and can last several years. This procedure is perfect for almost all kinds of patients. Composite bonding is mostly seen as a cosmetic procedure that often doesn’t involve removing anything from the teeth.

Veneers

Veneers are thin, porcelain, semi-transparent shells that bond with your tooth to make them look better. Often veneers are opted by people who are looking for a restorative procedure. If you have discolored, chipped, misshapen, broken, or crooked teeth, veneers are a great option for you.

Veneers can instantly improve your smile without you having to resort to long-term solutions like braces.

Root Canals

Also known as RCT, Root canals are performed by a dentist when a tooth has decayed to the point of no salvation. Root canal procedure starts with cleaning out the decay (which causes a lot of pain) by reaching the root of the teeth for restoration.

After cleaning, the dentist would fill the empty root with gutta-percha, a type of compound. After that, an inlay or onlay may be added eventually followed by a crown to ensure strength and good appearance.

Bottom Line

Dentistry has come a long way since its early days. Today you have a myriad of choices to pick from no matter the kind of dental issues you are facing. Talk to your dentist to see which method will work best to restore your smile.

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