Tooth restorations are the various ways your dentist can replace missing teeth or repair missing parts of the tooth structure. Tooth structure can be missing due to decay, deterioration of a previously placed restoration, or fracture of a tooth.
Examples of restorations include the following:
Fillings are considered the most common type of dental restoration.
What Types of Filling Materials Are Available?
Today, several dental filling materials are available. Teeth can be filled with gold; porcelain; silver amalgam (which consists of mercury mixed with silver, tin, zinc, and copper); or tooth-colored, plastic, and materials called composite resin fillings. There is also a material that contains glass particles and is known as glass ionomer. This material is used in ways similar to the use of composite resin fillings.
What are Inlays & Onlays?
Dental inlays and onlays are a medium between dental crowns and fillings. They are implicated on teeth at the back of the mouth that has suffered a moderate level of decay. Not only this, but inlays and onlays can also be placed on teeth that have undergone some fracturing; more serious damage will probably be resolved with a dental crown.
What are Dental Crowns and Tooth Bridges?
Both crowns and most bridges are fixed prosthetic devices. Unlike removable devices such as dentures, which you can take out and clean daily, crowns and bridges are cemented onto existing teeth or implants, and can only be removed by a dentist.
How do Crowns Work?
A crown is used to entirely cover or “cap” a damaged tooth. Besides strengthening a damaged tooth, a crown can be used to improve its appearance, shape or alignment.
How do Bridges Work?
A bridge may be recommended if you’re missing one or more teeth. Gaps left by missing teeth eventually cause the remaining teeth to rotate or shift into the empty spaces, resulting in a bad bite. The imbalance caused by missing teeth can also lead to gum disease and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.
How long do crowns last?
Crowns should last approximately five to eight years. However, with good oral hygiene and supervision, most crowns will last for a much longer period of time. Some damaging habits like grinding your teeth, chewing ice or fingernail biting may cause this period of time to decrease significantly.