A missing tooth can cause a lot of distress, especially in the front of your mouth where it is shows when you smile.
Similarly, teeth that have become worn, chipped or heavily filled, or crowns made in the last century may leave a lot to be desired.
Fortunately, we now have many different options for replacing missing teeth, or enhancing unsightly teeth to transform things and give you a reason to smile.
Veneers, crowns, bridges, implants or dentures?
Porcelain veneers consist of a thin but very strong layer of porcelain bonded to the front of the teeth. If planned and constructed carefully, these can often be placed with minimal tooth reduction making this one of the least invasive dental procedures.
Because porcelain is so hard and durable, it has proved an excellent material for repairing damaged teeth. By bonding a thin veneer of highly polished porcelain to the front teeth, badly discoloured or worn teeth can be restored and whitened at the same time. Care must be taken to match to teeth that will not be veneered and any existing crowns or bridges that cannot be whitened.
With Cerec CAD-CAM technology, veneers can even be made in a single visit to the dentist without having to wait for a dental laboratory to return the finished work.
A crown or onlay is a strong porcelain restoration for a single tooth, usually because of damage from decay or trauma. This may be advised because an ordinary filling is unlikely to be strong enough.
It is now possible to have a crown or onlay made in the dental surgery in a single visit using Cerec CAD-CAM technology avoiding the need for impressions and expensive dental laboratory work.
A bridge is a fixed replacement tooth attached to the teeth either side of the gap. The new tooth is usually made in a dental laboratory and attached to the adjacent teeth with a strong dental cement. Most bridges are made from a precious metal alloy overlaid with porcelain to match the other teeth.
One of the advantages a bridge is that it feels like a real tooth and does not need to be taken out at night. Because of the construction, bridges are usually very strong and often last for many years or even a lifetime.
A denture is a false tooth (or teeth) fixed to a removable plate.The plate is usually made from acrylic or a metal alloy such as Chrome cobalt. This results in a strong, lightweight replacement tooth.
Dental implants have now become a highly successful alternative to the above more traditional options. An implant consists of a machined titanium component that has been carefully prepared to allow the jaw bone to bond to it. A false tooth (crown or bridge) is then made to fit onto the implant resulting in replacement teeth which are fixed without the need for a removable plate or without using any other teeth for support.
More information on dental implants is here.
The Cosmetic Dental Consultation
This is the most important starting point and involves assessing the health of the gums and other soft tissues which will determine the long term success of any treatment.
The dentist will also take Xrays , photographs and make plaster models of the teeth as well as discussing your dental needs in detail to properly assess the best treatment options.
At Confidence Dental Care we will give you a complete cosmetic dental consultation free of charge!