Restorative dentistry aims to treat oral diseases to bring the mouth back to optimal health. This is completed through the diagnosis and treatment of various conditions affecting the teeth, gums, and maxillofacial (face and jaw) areas. Most restorative dental procedures are ultimately designed to restore function. However, some can also be used to improve one’s appearance. Examples of restorative dentistry include fillings, full or partial dentures, dental implants, veneers, bridges, and crowns.
During a dental appointment, our dentist will examine your mouth using visual, mechanical, and sometimes radiographic techniques. Depending on your symptoms and any problems found, a treatment plan will be discussed. Some forms of restorative dentistry are minimally-invasive and can be completed in a single appointment. Other diagnosis’s may be more complex and will require multiple visits.
There are four main types of materials used for restorations, including silver amalgam, composite resin, porcelain, and gold. The right choice for you will depend on the location of the affected tooth, the extent of the decay, and your insurance coverage. Amalgam is often used on posterior teeth as it can resist chewing forces. Tooth-colored composite fillings are often preferred for visible front teeth as they appear more natural.
If you are missing a tooth or the extent of damage is too severe, our Matthews dentist may recommend another restorative service. Veneers are a thin layer of porcelain or composite material that is tooth-colored and appears natural. They are bonded to the surface of one or more teeth to improve the appearance of uneven, cracked, or chipped teeth. Crowns are another type of restoration designed to cover damaged, cracked, or chipped teeth.
If you are missing one or more teeth, bridges can help restore function to your mouth. These prosthetic replacements consist of crowns placed adjacent to the missing tooth space. A replacement tooth (pontic) is then attached to the crowns. There are also other types of restorative services to meet the needs of all patients, such as implants, inlays, onlays, dentures, and bonding.