Dental fillings are familiar to most people. This is a common treatment for tooth decay/cavities which don’t severely damage the tooth (but will, if left untreated).
In the past, most of these fillings were the silver-colored amalgam type, but modern dental resin restorations, or composite fillings, can actually resemble the color of the tooth enamel, making them far less noticeable. For those who have metal sensitivities, this restoration type may be a better choice as they are free of mercury.
Dr. Rosado will check your teeth for the signs of tooth decay during your regular dental checkups. Suspicious areas may be tested with a dental probe, and digital x-rays can reveal cavities in places that might not be visible otherwise.
Fillings are a relatively simple process. A local anesthetic will be used to ensure your comfort during the procedure, after which your dentist will clear away the decayed area of the tooth. Once free from decay, the composite material is placed and sculpted into shape. When your dentist is satisfied with the shape of the composite filling, she can harden it through the use of a special curing light. Once done, the filling will be securely bonded to your tooth.
Fillings address damage caused by tooth decay, but they don’t make the tooth immune to additional decay, or cavities in other parts of the tooth. For this reason, the need for good oral hygiene doesn’t stop once you’ve had a filling. To prevent further tooth decay and keep the rest of the tooth free from cavities, be sure to brush twice a day for two minutes and floss. Use a fluoride toothpaste for extra protection against cavities.
A crown, sometimes referred to as a “cap,” is a complete covering for a tooth that is used to restore functionality to a tooth that has suffered damage.
Crowns are one of many options available for restoring teeth and may be an option when bonding or other more conservative treatments are not an option. This includes cases where a tooth has extensive tooth decay, a crack that threatens the structural integrity of the tooth, or after root canal therapy has been performed.
Crowns cover the entirety of the exposed portion of the tooth. They are made from porcelain and fashioned to look just like the top of a natural tooth.
Traditional porcelain crowns will take more than one visit to complete. Dr. Rosado will first prepare the tooth removing areas of decay and creating a space for the crown. After this, an impression of the tooth will be made, allowing the creation of a crown that will be a perfect match.
This impression will be sent to a dental lab where the crown will be created in a shade that will match well with your other teeth. While waiting for the crown to be created, you will be fitted with a temporary restoration to protect your tooth until your next visit, at which point your final crown will be bonded into place.
The lifespan of your crown can depend on how well you take care of it. Remember, the crown is still protecting a living tooth that needs the same care as the rest of your teeth. Be sure to continue to brush twice a day and floss in order to eliminate plaque from the area where the crown meets your gums and prevent gum disease.
It’s best to avoid biting into hard food or other objects which might damage your crown (such as fingernails). Let Dr. Rosado know if you have a habit of grinding your teeth, as this should be addressed to help protect, not only your crown, but all of your teeth from damage.
Dental implants are a fairly modern advancement in dentistry, allowing a missing tooth to be replaced with an artificial tooth. The implant itself replaces the root of the original tooth, allowing for the placement of a crown or other restoration with stability and function similar to the natural tooth that was replaced.
Ordinarily, in the case of missing teeth, bone loss will result in the surrounding area. However, the titanium posts of dental implants bond well with the jaw bone and help stimulate growth of the surrounding bone structure, minimizing the loss of bone.
A dental implant in place of a missing tooth can prevent the surrounding teeth from shifting.
Dental implants can be used alone or in combination with other restorations such as dentures and partials, allowing for much better bite strength than without them.
Dental implants can be used for those who are missing a single tooth or used in combination with other restorations to restore function and confidence.
Missing teeth can cause a range of problems, from self-esteem to difficulties with eating and speaking, so if you’re one of those people with tooth loss, ask Dr. Rosado if dental implants may be right for you.
Tooth loss can occur due to many reasons, untreated periodontal disease or tooth decay. Whatever the reason for the loss of teeth, it can result in issues when it comes to biting, chewing, and speaking. Shifting of the remaining teeth can cause discomfort, and many people who are missing teeth feel self-conscious about it.
Dentistry offers many solutions to the problem of missing teeth, depending on how many teeth are missing, the state of the remaining teeth, and other aspects. The most cost-effective option for patients with several missing teeth are dentures or partial dentures.
Dentures and partials can restore your ability to eat, give your smile back and help reduce the sunken look that those with missing teeth may have due to bone loss and sagging facial muscles resulting from tooth loss.
Restorations are available to replace all of the teeth on the upper or lower arch of the mouth. These are known as complete dentures.
For those who have remaining healthy teeth, partial dentures can be made to attach to them and fill in the areas where teeth are missing.
Bridges are an additional option for smaller gaps between natural teeth.
If enough healthy bone remains, implant-supported dentures may be an option. This method combines dentures with dental implants to provide for a more stable fit and improved chewing capabilities.
Give us a call to discuss your options for tooth replacement.
When a tooth is missing, it can often lead to problems. These can include changes in occlusion (your bite), shifting of the surrounding teeth, and a higher risk of additional issues such as gum disease, tooth decay, and TMD (temporomandibular joint disorder).
In cases where only one or a few teeth are missing, Dr. Rosado may suggest a dental restoration known as a fixed bridge.
A porcelain fixed bridge will place one or more artificial teeth, known as pontics, in the gap created by the missing tooth/teeth. These pontics will be held in place by dental crowns placed on the teeth adjacent to the gap.
Getting a fixed bridge will take more than one appointment. You will be assessed by Dr. Rosado to ensure that your teeth are healthy for the procedure and any outstanding issues will be addressed. X-rays will be taken, the surrounding teeth will be prepared, and an impression will be made of your teeth, from which the bridge will be designed. You will be provided a temporary bridge while the final one is being manufactured.
Once the dental lab has created your final bridge, you will need to return to our office to have the bridge placed.
Your dental restoration should last for years, provided you take proper care of it. We will provide you with care instructions on how best to take care of your bridge. Brushing twice a day and flossing, as always, is necessary. Feel free to speak with our team to go over the proper oral hygiene techniques.