A patient who has teeth that are damaged or missing, whether from disease, injury or other causes, is a candidate for restorative dentistry, which will restore overall mouth health and make teeth look esthetically pleasing. Receiving proper treatment for damaged or missing teeth is essential in order to prevent further problems and eliminate difficulties with eating or speaking.
What Is Restorative Dentistry?
Restorative dentistry is not a specialty; it is an area within general dentistry that is dedicated to the management of oral health. There are several procedures that may be involved in achieving this objective, including dental fillings, crowns and bridges, dental implants, and root canal therapy.
Why Should I Replace/Restore a Missing or Damaged Tooth?
A damaged tooth does not self-repair, no matter how well you brush and floss. Once the signs of decay or injury have manifested, it is safe to say that the tooth is on a progressive downward path. The primary reason to obtain restorative care to repair a tooth is to avoid more pain, more stress, and the need for a more involved dental procedure.
Tooth replacement is also a vital aspect of managing oral health. If a tooth has been knocked out or badly damaged to the point where extraction or tooth loss occurs, there is a need to fill the empty space created. Not doing so invites bacteria to accumulate on the gums and in the margin around the teeth next to the gap. Bite alignment may also be affected by untreated tooth loss, as may the appearance of the smile.
The Benefits of Restorative Dentistry
Restorative dentistry is necessary when something has gone wrong in the mouth; a tooth has chipped or fractured or has been compromised by decay. The faster that a tooth is restored after the onset of decay or injury, the better chance there is of avoiding further damage. Prompt dental care prevents deeper infection in a tooth and therefore can enable a person to avoid unnecessary pain and stress. Early restorative care is also cost-effective; it treats the initial problem while it is still minor, possibly avoiding more comprehensive procedures.
Am I a Candidate for Restorative Dentistry?
Every person can benefit from restorative dentistry exams and procedures because most of us, at some point, encounter mild to moderate dental decline. The extent of dental problems can be greatly reduced with prompt care from your trusted dentist.
Dental bridges are natural-looking tooth replacements that help maintain facial structure, reduce stress on the jaw and fill in the gaps caused by missing teeth. With dental bridges, your dentist can close the gaps in your teeth to improve your smile.
Dental crowns are restorations that cover or cap a tooth, restoring it to its normal size and shape while strengthening and improving its appearance. Crowns are necessary when the tooth is broken down to the point where a filling will not be effective.
Dental bonding is a special procedure used to restore, reshape and rejuvenate teeth, improving both their function and appearance. Dentists apply a thin layer of tooth-colored microscopically glass-filled resin to the front of the tooth and sculpt it to perfect the patient’s appearance.
Tooth-colored or composite fillings are a mixture of resin, glass or quartz and porcelain ceramics. These materials are resilient and long lasting. These fillings are colored to match the patient’s teeth and are practically invisible to the untrained eye.
Cost of Restorative Dentistry
Within restorative dentistry, there are numerous choices that can make tooth repair as cost-effective as possible. For example, patients may choose between several types of dental crowns based on need, preferences, and budget. Dental fillings, as well, can be selected to fit within your unique cost parameters.
Does Insurance Cover Restorative Dentistry?
Often, dental insurance is extended to help cover the costs of dental restorations. A member of our staff may be able to assist you in understanding your coverage. We can also submit claims to your insurance company on your behalf. For further assistance with restorative or cosmetic treatments, we offer financing that enables patients to make affordable payments toward their dental treatment.
What Results should I expect of Restorative Treatment?
Restorative dental treatments are conducted with the primary focus of repairing damage in a manner that fortifies the tooth to withstand chewing and biting. However, thanks to the numerous tooth-colored restorations available today, many dental treatments achieve results that also preserve the natural appearance of the smile.
Restorative Dentistry vs Cosmetic Dentistry
In restorative dentistry, we address issues that relate primarily to the function of teeth. Restorative care revolves around tooth decay, tooth injury such as a broken tooth, missing teeth, and gum inflammation or infection.
In cosmetic dentistry, issues related to the appearance of the smile are addressed. Cosmetic treatments may brighten the teeth, straighten them, or cover them to make them appear longer, wider or narrower, or otherwise in better proportion to surrounding teeth and the lips.