Restorative Procedures

White Resin Fillings

A dental restoration or dental filling is a dental restorative material used artificially to restore the function, integrity and morphology of missing tooth structure. The structural loss typically results from caries or external trauma.

Dental composites

Dental composites are also called white fillings. Crowns and in-lays can also be made in the laboratory from dental composites. These materials are similar to those used in direct fillings and are the color of your tooth. Their strength and durability is not as high as porcelain or metal restorations and they are more prone to wear and discoloration.

Many people still have silver/mercury fillings in their mouths from years past. These fillings are not particularly pleasing to the eye, and we know that by unavoidable design, silver/mercury fillings ultimately result in a weaker tooth structure. Porcelain inlays and tooth-colored restorations (onlays) create fillings that are not only beautiful (or unnoticeable), but also add strength to weakened teeth that has been exposed to a lot of decay. These restorations are aesthetically pleasing and very strong thanks to new bonding technologies.

Advantages of Tooth-Colored Restorations

There are many advantages to tooth-colored restorations. Resin onlays are bonded to the teeth creating a tight, superior fit to the natural tooth.  Such restorations can be used in instances where much of the tooth structure has been lost. The tooth remains intact and stronger.

Since the resin used in tooth-colored restorations contain fluoride this can help prevent decay. The resin wears like natural teeth and does not require placement at the gum line, which is healthier for your gums!

Disadvantages Of Silver Fillings

Silver fillings have many drawbacks. The edges of the silver filling can wear down, become weak or break.  This results in the tooth not being protected and creates an environment where cavities get started once again.  With age, the metal of a silver filling expands, contracts, and can split.  Along with the expansion and contractions, it is very common for metal fillings to develop micro-fractures that cause small leakages that cause the growth of decay underneath the filling; further weakening the tooth structure.

Silver fillings contain 50 percent mercury. They can corrode, leak, and cause stains on your teeth and gums.

Fortunately, silver fillings can safely be replaced with tooth-colored restorations.

Crowns

Most dentistry looks like dentistry. Our goal is to provide dentistry that is undetectable. We replace existing crowns and fillings with restorations that look and feel like your natural teeth. Where damage to a person’s teeth is extreme, and apparently beyond repair, we can use porcelain or porcelain “pasted on gold” crowns to make the smile appear “as new”. This is an extremely reliable technique for repairing the most severe of dental problems, even permanently replacing missing teeth to offer a complete smile and a functional bite. We are renowned for the quality of our work and the fantastic changes we make for people using this technology. These treatments are used for a long lasting correction of major dental problems. It is usual for these treatments to last for 20 to 30 years, which is as close to permanent as dental treatment can get.

Fitting a crown requires at least two visits to our office. Initially, we will remove decay, shape the tooth, and fit it with a temporary crown of either plastic or metal.  On the subsequent visit we will remove the temporary crown, and then fit and adjust the final crown.  Finally, we will cement the crown into place and you have a new beautiful looking tooth.

Key Benefits of a Crown

  • Replaces missing teeth
  • Offers support to misshapen teeth or badly broken teeth
  • Looks completely natural
  • Fixes “smile” and functional chewing problems.

Fixed Bridges

A bridge — a device used to replace missing teeth — attaches artificial teeth to adjacent natural teeth, called abutment teeth. Fixed bridges are applied by either placing crowns on the abutment teeth or by bonding the artificial teeth directly to the abutment teeth.

If you’re missing one or more teeth, you may be aware of their importance to your appearance and dental health. Your teeth work together for many daily functions from eating to speaking. With missing teeth, it’s difficult to do these things. Missing teeth can and should be replaced. Fixed bridges are a great way to restore your dental health and appearance.

Why do I need a bridge?

Oral functionality and appearance are important reasons for wearing a bridge. A bridge helps support your lips and cheeks. The loss of a back tooth may cause your mouth to sink and your face to look older.

Dental health is the most important reason for a bridge. Teeth were designed to complement each other. Unusual stresses are placed on the gums and other oral tissues when teeth are missing, causing a number of potentially harmful disorders.

Increased risk of gum disease has proven to be one of the worst side effects of missing teeth and can be minimized with a bridge.

Missing teeth can cause speech disorders as they are used to make many of the sounds we use to speak clearly.

Inlays / Onlays

What are inlays and onlays?

Inlays and onlays can be made of porcelain, gold, or composite resin. These pieces are bonded to the damaged area of the tooth. An inlay, which is similar to a filling, is used inside the cusp tips of the tooth; an onlay is a more substantial reconstruction, similar to the inlay but extending out over one or more of the cusps of the tooth.  They are suggested by a dentist when over ½ of the tooth’s biting surface is damaged.

Traditionally, gold has been the material of choice for inlays and onlays. In recent years, however, porcelain has become increasingly popular due to its strength and color, which can potentially match the natural color of your teeth.

Considerations

Traditional fillings can reduce the strength of a natural tooth by up to 50%. As an alternative, inlays and onlays, being bonded directly onto the tooth using special high-strength resins, can actually increase the strength of a tooth by up to 75%. As a result, they can last from 10 to 30 years. In some cases, where the damage to the tooth is not extensive enough to merit an entire crown, onlays can provide a very good alternative.

Dentures

A denture, is an appliance that is inserted in the mouth, replaces natural teeth and provides support for the cheeks and lips.  Most dentures are made of acrylic and can be fabricated two different ways.  There are two types of dentures: complete dentures and removable partial dentures.

Complete Dentures

Whether you have lost all of your natural teeth from periodontal disease, tooth decay, or injury, replacing your missing teeth will improve not only your smile but as well as your overall appearance and health.  Without the support provided by a complete denture, facial muscles can sag, therefore causing a person to look older.  With a denture, you will be able to eat and speak confidently once again.  There are several types of complete dentures:

  • A conventional denture is made after all teeth have been extracted and the tissues (gums) have healed.
  • An immediate denture is fabricated and inserted immediately after the teeth are extracted and the tissues are allowed to heal under the denture.
  • An upper denture is acrylic and usually flesh colored that covers the palate (roof of the mouth).
  • A lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to leave room for the tongue.

The teeth are made of plastic, porcelain or a combination thereof. Dentures can be fabricated to fit over endodontically treated teeth and a complete denture can be attached to dental implants to allow for a more secure fit of the appliance.

Oral hygiene is still important even with wearing complete dentures.  Every morning, be sure to brush your tongue, gums, and palate with a soft-bristled brush before placing in your dentures in order to help stimulate circulation in your oral tissues and remove plaque.

Removable Partial Dentures

Removable partial dentures usually consist of replacement teeth attached to pink or gum-colored plastic bases, which are connected by metal framework. Removable partial dentures attach to your natural teeth with metal clasps or devices called precision attachments. Precision attachments are generally more esthetic than metal clasps and they are nearly invisible. Crowns on your natural teeth may improve the fit of a removable partial denture and they are usually required with attachments. Dentures with precision attachments generally cost more than those with metal clasps. Consult with our doctors to find out which type is right for you.