What is restorative dentistry?
The term "restorative dentistry" can be used to describe a variety of dental procedures that help patients restore their dental health and regain confidence. Restorative treatments are great for patients who have had an injury, tooth decay, or gum disease. It can be as simple as filling a cavity or as individualized as replacing a missing tooth.
Did you know…
Dental issues can worsen and become more severe and costly the longer you leave them untreated.
What to expect at your initial restorative appointment
Oral exams are a crucial part of any dental appointment. A comprehensive oral exam is an examination that covers the entire mouth and includes screening for oral cancer, periodontal disease, tooth decay, and other issues that may affect your teeth, gums, or jawbone. This type of exam can also be referred to as a "full mouth" or "comprehensive" exam because it checks every area of your mouth for potential problems.
Personal Treatment Plan
After your exam, you and your dentist will work together to develop your personal treatment plan. A treatment plan is a detailed outline of the recommended procedures and services. Typically, it includes a timeline for each service and information about what you can expect to happen during your appointment.
Options and Alternatives
We understand that all smiles are unique and as such, no treatment plan is one-size-fits-all. We take the time to walk you through all your possible treatment options to choose the right course for you based on your budget, schedule, and goals. Whether it’s scheduling your next consultation or getting you in for a filling, we’ll take it one step at a time, together.
Our team is committed to ensuring safe and comfortable dentistry. For those who are nervous about their treatment or have difficulty sitting still due to dental anxiety, we offer a variety of sedation options. If you are interested in sedation, we will gladly discuss your options with you and determine what is best for your situation.
Appointments & Follow-Ups
If you are coming to us to treat a dental emergency, you’ll need to receive treatment as soon as possible. In these cases we may be able to offer same-day care, depending on availability and the severity of your issue. Otherwise, after your cleaning and initial exam, we will simply schedule your next follow up appointment. We’ll be sure to get you in for a day and time that is convenient for you.
Restorative Treatment Options
Inlays and Onlays
Dental inlays and onlays are a restorative procedure to improve the function, appearance, or both of teeth. A dental inlay is when there is an artificial tooth-shaped filling that goes over the surface of a damaged tooth. Dental onlay is when an artificial tooth-shaped filling goes over a structural defect or fracture within the natural crown of a tooth. They can be made from either porcelain or composite resin material and are usually larger than traditional fillings.
Lab-made crowns are created by a dental technician at an outside lab. These dental prosthetics restore damaged teeth, covering the entire tooth down to the gum line. Your dentist will first trim your tooth and shape it into a strong platform for attaching your new crown before taking an impression or scan and sending it to our state-of-the-art partner lab where they will craft your custom restoration.
While your custom crown is being made in the lab, we will place a temporary crown and send you on your way. When we receive your permanent crown from the lab, we will have you come back for a quick placement appointment. We will check the fit and make sure it sits comfortably in your smile.
A dental bridge is a fixed prosthetic that replaces one or more missing teeth. The process of installing the dental bridge will involve placing crowns on the two adjacent teeth and cementing them together to support the new tooth.
The advantages of having a dental bridge are numerous, but they include better chewing ability, improved speech, less sensitivity from exposed roots, and an overall improvement in oral health because it supports natural teeth.
Root Canal Therapy
A root canal is a dental procedure that removes the pulp from inside of a tooth that has become infected or damaged. The procedure can be performed on any teeth, but it is most commonly done on molars or premolars.
The goal of root canal therapy is to remove all traces of infection from the tooth and replace it with filling material (typically gutta-percha). This prevents future problems and helps you avoid more invasive procedures like extraction and tooth replacement. We strive to preserve your natural teeth whenever possible.
To perform this procedure, your dentist will clean out all infected tissue within the root canal system using ultrasonic instruments or hand files and irrigate with an antibacterial solution. After the infection has been removed, you will usually receive a dental crown to protect the tooth from further decay or damage.
Full & Partial Dentures
Dentures are removable appliances that replace missing teeth and gum tissue. A partial denture is made when only some of the natural teeth have been lost, while a full denture can be used to replace all the natural teeth. Dentures may be made from plastic or metal materials and stay in place by suctioning onto the roof of your mouth with an adhesive material or metal framework that clips onto your remaining healthy teeth. Dentures offer a convenient affordable solution for restoring your smile and self-confidence. To find out if a partial or full denture may be right for you, schedule a consultation today!
Sometimes oral surgeries may be needed to prep your mouth for dental implant treatment, remove teeth that are growing in improperly, or correct severe orthodontic issues.
Bone grafts are another common oral surgery that helps replace jaw bone mass and promote regrowth. Patients who have weakened jawbones due to periodontal disease, tooth loss, or the natural aging process may be good candidates for this treatment. Bone grafts are often done prior to a dental implant placement to ensure the jaw bone will be able to retain an implant.
Extractions may be needed if a patient is receiving full dentures or full-arch dental implants. Because a full-arch of artificial teeth requires the extraction of all remaining teeth, we will only recommend this treatment option if we can not restore your smile using other, less invasive procedures.
Did you know…
Over 3 million Americans have replaced missing teeth with dental implants.
Have questions about restorative dentistry? Find answers here.
What issues can restorative dentistry solve?
Restorative dentistry comes with many benefits such as preventing tooth decay, keeping your mouth healthy and looking good! Restorative dentistry can restore the form and function of damaged and missing teeth and prevent further damage from occurring. Also, if you’ve experienced dental trauma due to an injury or an accident, restorative dentistry can help you get your smile back!
What are the benefits of restorative dental procedures?
Restorative dental treatments seem like a daunting process, and one that many people would rather avoid. However, thanks to modern techniques and advanced technology, restorative dentistry is more comfortable and convenient than ever! By getting restorative dental treatment when you need it, patients can avoid future complications and more costly procedures. By getting the care you need, you can save time and money in the long run and get peace of mind knowing that you are doing right by your smile. Restorative dentistry not only restores your oral health, but also gives you back your confidence and improves the overall appearance of your smile too.
What is considered a dental emergency?
A dental emergency is any condition that requires immediate attention which you can not treat yourself. This includes persistent toothaches, oral pain or discomfort, broken or chipped teeth, missing dental work, and bleeding gums. If you’re not sure if you’re experiencing a dental emergency, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Contact our office right away to get the emergency treatment you need.
Is restorative dentistry covered by insurance?
Some insurances cover at least a portion of the cost of necessary restorative procedures, but the extent of your coverage may vary based on your policy. For example, your dental insurance provider may cover a simple filling or root canal, but may not offer full coverage for dental implants. To better understand your coverage, we recommend getting in touch with your insurance provider to understand your financial responsibility, if any. We are also happy to answer any questions you may have and would be glad to help you maximize your insurance benefits at our office.
Did you know…
About a quarter of American adults are missing all of their teeth. Restorative dentistry can help you avoid tooth loss altogether.