Should you wait for a tooth to become painful or visibly damaged before visiting a dentist for restoration? Dental restorations can provide pain relief, aesthetic improvement, and greater function for teeth that are damaged from decay or illness. Restorations can also be a solution for missing teeth, providing you with a full functioning set of teeth. At San Tan Oral Surgery in Gilbert, AZ, we can restore your healthy and glowing smile.
Dental Restoration FAQs:
What Is Dental Restoration?
The goal of dental restoration is to restore the mouth and teeth to its ideal function and aesthetic appearance. Restoration can include a variety of treatments and procedures to replace and repair teeth, such as fillings or prosthetics. If you are missing teeth or have a damaged tooth, restoration can address many problems that come from tooth loss and damage.
When Should a Tooth Be Restored?
While restoration may be an obvious choice when the damage to a tooth is visible or painful, it can also be a measure to prevent further complications. Regular visits to the dentist will help catch issues before they require significant restoration. If you notice minor damage or pain coming from a tooth, you should visit your dentist immediately for assessment.
Teeth with visible stains can be whitened through restoration. A cavity is a bacterial decay that can be painful and have an undesirable appearance. If a cavity is left untreated, the tooth may require extraction or a crown to provide stability. Missing teeth should also be restored to prevent gum damage and improve the functionality of the mouth.
If you are missing a single tooth or multiple teeth, they can be replaced with a dental implant. The implant will restore the appearance of your smile and help you with normal functions like chewing. If all or most of the teeth are missing, a solution like all-on-four implants or bridges may be necessary.
What Types of Restoration Are There?
A direct restoration is one that is directly applied to a prepared tooth. This can include fillings meant to restore a decayed tooth and veneers to correct discolored teeth and fix minor damage like chips and cracks. Direct restorations are meant to improve the appearance of a tooth or teeth and stop the process of decay, but the teeth are left intact. Direct restorations rarely have the same quality of appearance and longevity as indirect restorations.
An indirect restoration is one that is prepared outside of the mouth, usually using a mold to make a prosthetic, which is then applied to the prepared tooth or gums. Crowns, bridges, and implants are all examples of indirect restorations. The prosthetic may be made in a laboratory or molded from your existing teeth. Indirect restorations may be needed to replace teeth after an illness, extraction, or accident.
A crown is an indirect restoration meant to support a tooth by covering the entire surface of the natural tooth after it is prepared. The crown looks like and provides the function of a natural tooth. Implants are also indirect restorations made in a laboratory as a replacement for an extracted or missing tooth. The implant is placed in the mouth using a titanium root attached to the upper or lower jawbone.
How Long Will It Take to Restore a Tooth?
The amount of time a tooth restoration takes may vary. For direct restoration, we may be able to complete the treatment in a single visit. Resin fillings can be applied in several minutes, while amalgam and porcelain fillings may require a second visit. An indirect restoration takes more than one visit because we need to prepare the tooth and create the prosthetic mold. You will need to return for the prosthetic to be applied. After the restoration, your mouth and teeth will need time to heal. Expect a filling to be sensitive for several weeks and an implant to take four to six months before it is fully healed.
How Long Does a Restoration Last?
While indirect restorations tend to last longer than direct restorations, the amount of time the restoration will last depends on the material and the location of the restoration. Proper care can also ensure the restoration lasts as long as possible. A resin filling may last five or more years, but it tends to last half the time of porcelain or amalgam fillings. Crowns meant to save a tooth can last 5 to 15 years, and a prosthetic implant can last over 25 years. If you visit the dentist regularly, you can replace the restoration before it has outlived its usefulness.
Will My Restoration Be Expensive?
The cost of dental restoration can vary based on the type of restoration and the condition of your teeth. If we need to address the underlying cause of the restoration, this may also be part of your treatment expenses. While some restorations are covered by dental insurance providers, implants are not covered in many dental plans. If you need implants, you will most likely have to cover them out-of-pocket. Regular visits to the dentist can help us catch teeth in need of restoration early to treat them before they become more involved and can save you money and time.
See if Tooth Restoration Is Right for You
If you are unsure if your tooth needs restoration, visit San Tan Oral Surgery in Gilbert, AZ for an initial consultation today. We will find the restoration that is right for you and ensure that you are satisfied with the functionality and appearance of your teeth.