A variety of restorative dentistry options exist to help improve teeth, both in health and appearance, such as after tooth loss or damage. These restorative measures also can prevent further damage and can alleviate difficulties with speaking and/or eating.
More commonly known as silver fillings, amalgam fillings are a common form of dental restoration at a relatively inexpensive price point. However, sometimes they are avoided, as the silver color could be seen while smiling, eating, or speaking.
Composite fillings are composed of a glass or quartz filler in resin, producing a white, tooth-colored filling. These fracture-resistant fillings blend in to a patient’s mouth, offering durable yet well-disguised dental work.
A tooth’s soft tissue is located in the dental pulp, extending from the top to the bottom end of the root. Nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue all are present here, helping to provide nutrients to the tooth during its growth.
Dental pulp can become damaged, and if left untreated, it will compromise the integrity of the tooth, gradually decaying it. Damage to the pulp most commonly arises in the form of an untreated cavity, which can allow bacteria to gain access to the soft tissue after wearing through the enamel. Trauma can also be responsible for pulp damage by cutting off the flow of blood which keeps the tissue alive. Infections in the dental pulp can lead to pain and bone damage.
A root canal, also known as a pulpotomy/pulpectomy, is still necessary on primary (baby) teeth, even though they are not permanent. Aside from the pain and infection risks accompanied by the damage, these teeth are used for proper chewing and speaking and also help shape your child’s face while keeping a space for the eventual permanent teeth.
Stainless Steel Dental Crowns
Stainless steel dental crowns, also called caps, covers or caps a broken tooth, restoring it to its original size and shape. Sometimes fillings would not be effective, so crowns restore the tooth while protecting and strengthening it from any further damage. The stainless steel variety of crowns are the stronger of the two crown types, but the metallic color can be a drawback. Because of this, they are typically reserved for rear teeth, though in certain cases, it’s possible to have them crafted with white facings for visible teeth.
White Crowns are made of resin and are the common crowns used for front teeth, as they will appear cosmetically alike to a patient’s natural teeth. Since they are not as durable as stainless steel crowns, they sometimes need replacing.
More commonly known as getting a tooth pulled, an extraction is a last resort procedure, though very safe and common. Prior to an extraction, a dentist comprehensively examines the situation, determining whether or not any other options to save the tooth exist.
Extractions are mostly used in the case of broken teeth, considerably decayed teeth, and wisdom teeth. To ease discomfort, a dentist will use a local anesthesia during the procedure. The tooth is removed by rocking it back and forth, loosening it from its natural socket.
In addition to antibiotics, sometimes painkillers are prescribed to alleviate any post-procedure pain, though many find that an icepack does the trick. While the wound heals, certain foods should be avoided for the first few days. The normal healing time for an extraction is anywhere from one to two weeks.