The term restorative dentistry refers to several different procedures that treat a variety of oral health problems.
While cosmetic dentistry enhances the appearance of your smile, restorative dentistry returns the teeth, gums, and jaw to a functional state. The problems we treat with restorative dentistry tend to overlap those we treats with cosmetic dentistry, such as missing, cracked, or chipped teeth. Our goal with restorative dentistry is to preserve your natural teeth whenever possible.
Situations That May Require Restorative Dentistry
You may be a good candidate for a restorative dentistry procedure if you meet any of the following criteria:
- You experience pain when you chew and bite your food
- Previous dental treatments have failed
- A large gap exists between your teeth
- Your teeth are misaligned or your bite is uneven
- One or more of your teeth are missing
- You sustained trauma to a tooth due to an injury
- You have significant tooth decay
Before recommending a specific procedure, the dentist consults with you and completes an oral health examination. They explain the reason for the recommendation and the steps necessary to complete the process before scheduling you for a follow-up appointment.
Specific Restorative Dentistry Procedures
Depending on your symptoms and treatment goals, we may complete one or more of these restorative dentistry procedures:
- Inlays and Onlays: An inlay covers the cusp of a single tooth when it contains significant decay. If you have several decayed teeth, an onlay is more appropriate. These can also replace old metal fillings. Inlays and onlays are a more conservative approach to treating tooth decay than placing a dental bridge.
- Crowns and Bridges: A dental crown covers the entire surface of a decaying tooth to prevent further bacteria from invading it. Bridges allow for replacement of a single tooth or several consecutive teeth by adhering to the teeth surrounding those that are missing.
- Dental Implants: This is a popular alternative to wearing removable dentures. When you opt for dental implants, the dentist inserts several small titanium screws in your jaw to hold your new permanent teeth in place. You may have to wait several months in between placement of the screws and receiving the new dentures to give the bone a chance to heal.
- Root Canal Therapy: During a root canal, the dentist removes the diseased pulp from a tooth and cleans the area thoroughly. They also place a dental cap to prevent further infection and protect the structure and integrity of the tooth.
Schedule a Consultation at Main Street Dental Arts to Learn More
If you feel you could benefit from a restorative dentistry procedure, set up an appointment with Main Street Dental Arts to discuss your options. We are happy to answer your questions and help you enjoy excellent oral health.