What is Restorative Dentistry?
Though its commonly advised to visit your dentist every 6 months for a thorough cleaning and dental health checkup, there are some conditions that require more specialized treatments. These specialized procedures, called Restorative Dentistry, involve diagnosing, preventing, and treating oral diseases and undesirable conditions. Whether these are genetic or environmental, caused by our sugar laden modern diet, neglect, or trauma, Restorative Dentistry takes a holistic and inter-disciplinary approach to achieve optimum health and aesthetics. Dentists are trained in these methods to restore teeth that are cracked, yellowed, decayed, chipped, missing, and more. Below, we explore just a few of the many procedures encompassed by Restorative Dentistry, as well as what to expect from your visit with your dentist.
Crowns and Bridges
Crowns are restorative measures that involve covering the entire portion of a tooth that is damaged, cracked, or is in need of general restoration. Like the name implies, a crown sits on top of the entire existing tooth and is cemented or bonded into place. A bridge, on the other hand, is a fully prosthetic tooth, or teeth, anchored to its adjacent teeth by crowns.
Fillings refer to any treatment that is aimed to restore the surface of a tooth. The purpose is to restore the original function, integrity, and morphology of the tooth and is accomplished in a number of ways according to the nature of the problem and desired result.
Air Abrasion and Micro Dentistry
This technology utilizes a fine aluminum oxide powder to painlessly and non-invasively treat cavities and decay in a tooth without the need for local anesthesia. This new ‘conservative’ intervention can treat decay in the earliest stages and removes as little of the natural tooth structure as is possible.
A primarily cosmetic procedure, veneers are used to improve the appearance of teeth, primarily in the front. They are comprised of a layer of porcelain or composite material bonded to existing teeth. They improve the appearance of chipped, cracked, or otherwise uneven teeth.
Full and Partial Dentures
Dentures are a very common solution for those with missing or no teeth. Dentures restore the crucial ability to chew and bite. A partial denture is created for those who wish to preserve the existing teeth in their mouth, while a full denture can restore an entire row of missing teeth.
More Restorative Services…
The above restorations are only the tip of the restorative iceberg. Bonding, inlays, onlays, implants, removable prosthetics, and much more fall under the guise of restorative dentistry. Contact your local accredited dentist for more information on these procedures.
The first step for any restorative treatment is consultation and diagnosis. Your dentist will use manual, mechanical, or more technologically specific means to analyze and diagnose your teeth’s condition and decide on the best strategy for restoration. Many procedures are minimally invasive and require only one visit, while others may require follow up visits to achieve optimal results.
We should consider ourselves lucky to live in a time when even the most egregious dental conditions can be treated with relative ease. Don’t hesitate to contact your dentist with any questions in regard to your mouth’s health.