Dental fillings are used to replace and restore tooth structure that is damaged by decay or breakage. Traditionally, silver amalgam was the dominant material used for these fillings. Today, we can provide strong, tooth-colored restorations made of composite (bonded) resins and ceramics. These modern materials allow us to mimic the color and texture of your natural teeth while simultaneously providing excellent function for years to come.
Dental implants are artificial teeth that are placed permanently into bone to replace lost or missing natural teeth. In general, they are made of titanium and other bio-inert materials that are compatible with the human body. Implants can be used to replace a single tooth, several teeth, or to support the replacement of an entire jaw full of teeth. A single tooth implant is a free-standing unit. It does not affect the adjacent teeth; a distinct advantage over a natural tooth-supported bridge where the natural teeth on either side of the space where a tooth/teeth are missing must be trimmed down to act as supports for the bridge. An implant-supported bridge is used when one or more teeth are missing. It usually requires at least two implants but can allow for restoration of three or more teeth. If you are missing all of your teeth, an implant supported bridge or denture can be used to replace the missing teeth. Because the dental implants integrate with the jawbone, an implant supported denture tends to be comfortable and stable, allowing you to bite and chew naturally. Implants are a popular and effective way to replace missing teeth and have been one of the biggest advances in dentistry in the last 40 years. Over 5.5 million implants are placed annually in the United States. Dental implants are the ‘Gold’ standard for replacing missing teeth and many patients can hardly tell them apart from natural teeth.
Crowns are placed on teeth that have become weakened over time from being filled multiple times, cracks/fractures, severe wear or when there is not enough remaining tooth structure to support a large filling. This dental restoration protects your tooth by covering or “capping” your tooth to restore it to its ideal shape, size and function. Crowns can be made from many different materials such as metal alloys, ceramics, or a combination of these materials. When deciding what type of material to use, we will evaluate any cosmetic considerations as well as functional requirements to create a crown that looks natural and feels comfortable. Learn more about our CEREC One Visit Crowns technology for single visit restorations by clicking HERE.
When there is no alternative and a tooth/teeth must be removed, a bridge is a non-removeable, natural-looking replacement option. It is important to replace missing teeth since loss of teeth can create a myriad of problems. Tooth loss can create space deficiencies and cosmetic issues. It can lead to an inability to chew or speak properly. It can create bite issues and pain in the mouth and surrounding structures. Bearing that in mind, a bridge generally consists of teeth fabricated to fit into the space where a tooth/teeth are missing and is attached to and supported by crowns on natural teeth or implants on either side of the space. Bridges can be made from three types of material: solid metal for reliable long wear, porcelain fused to a metal base for strength and beauty, and high-strength metal-free porcelain for optimum cosmetic results. We will discuss which materials are best suited for your needs.
If you have lost some or all of your natural teeth, removable partial dentures can be an economical solution to replacing your missing teeth – improving your health as well as your appearance. Dentures can support cheeks and lips and prevent the sagging of facial muscles, which makes a person with no teeth look much older. Dentures also improve your ability to chew and enable you to eat much easier. Missing teeth can sometimes make it hard to speak clearly. Wearing a removable partial denture can help. These are little things often taken for granted until natural teeth are lost.
A full denture is a removable appliance for replacing missing teeth and gum tissue. Dentures are usually made of acrylic and denture design and technology has improved to the point where it is now possible to have esthetic, functional and well-fitting dentures.
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