You have probably heard the phrase, “You only live once!” thrown out in a moment of excitement and abandon. It’s a great way to encourage yourself to really go out there and live life to the fullest, though some people might take that a little bit too far!
We have another phrase we’d like you to remember. “You only get one set of adult teeth!” Just think, when you were a baby, you had a set of baby teeth. Then, you gained your full, adult teeth that need to last for the rest of your life. You’re looking at (on average) 70-75 years in those teeth!
They need to be protected right from the beginning, and when damage occurs, it needs to be treated. Let’s face it, there will be damage. You will develop cavities, cracks, chips, and breaks to your teeth. It’s going to happen.
The question is, how will you handle that damage? Because if you look around, you’ll see that most people do nothing about that damage, and they end up causing more. Damage on top of damage on top of damage leads to lost adult teeth. Then what do you do?
Dental restorations are just one way we make sure that your teeth are there to stay. After all, research shows that adults who retain their natural teeth are likely to live up to 10 years longer than adults who wear dentures!
Why Restorations are Important
When your tooth becomes damaged, it is essential that you take the measures necessary to restore that damage so that your tooth can continue to function as it always has. Without that restoration, you will eventually lose a tooth that could have been saved.
From Basic to Complete Restorations
As you will soon see, there are several levels of restorations available to you so that no matter what kind of trouble your tooth is in, we can repair the damage! Let’s take a look at these restorations and when they might be used to restore your natural teeth!
The most common dental restoration is a dental filling. Almost ¾ of teenagers have at least one filling before they ever receive their diploma, and we are seeing a trend of cavities being placed in younger and younger smiles.
A filling is necessary when the bacteria in your mouth produces acid that eats through your tooth enamel causing a cavity to form. We use composite resin to fill that cavity, end the spread of decay, and restore your tooth to its normal function.
A crown takes things a step further. A crown is a restorative piece that is used when your tooth can no longer function on its own. Fillings are not enough to stop the spread of decay, or a tooth is broken and can no longer bear the daily tasks of chewing and speaking.
A crown is a porcelain tooth cap that we fit over the damaged tooth. The crown looks and feels like a natural tooth, but the main purpose is to seal the natural tooth below so that it is protected from bacteria and infection.
Fillings and crowns will work while your tooth is still present, but when a tooth actually comes out of your mouth (through extraction or otherwise), you need to fill that space! One option is to fill the gap in your smile with a dental bridge.
A bridge is a false tooth attached to a crown (or metal wing) on either side. We attach the crown to the healthy teeth that stand adjacent to the gap to restore your chewing, speaking, and smiling abilities.
A dental implant is the highest level of dental restoration. This restorative piece is so complete that it actually restores the crown of your natural tooth as well as the root! It is a permanent restoration that can replace a single tooth, several missing teeth, or can even be used to secure your dentures in a stable position!
A Complete Smile is a Healthy Smile
If you want to maintain a healthy smile until the end of your days, it is important that you maintain great oral care and restore your teeth when they develop damage! Without the most basic restoration, decay is allowed to spread throughout your mouth and end your smile prematurely.
Contact us today to set up your next dental cleaning and exam. We would love to see you soon to check on your old restorations and ensure that you don’t need any new restorations!
We can’t wait to see you soon!