RESTORATIVE DENTISTRY

These are white or tooth coloured fillings which are made of a plastic material mixed with small glass particles and can be used on all teeth.

Advantages:

  • They are more aesthetically pleasing
  • Composite filled teeth tend to be stronger as it bonds to the surrounding tooth structure
  • Treatment can be more conservative as the material can fit into very small holes
  • Composite insulates the tooth from major temperature changes that may affect the nerve

Disadvantages:

  • The placement technique is more advanced therefore the procedure can take slightly longer
  • They are usually more expensive
  • They can wear out quicker than amalgam in larger cavities
  • The tooth filled with composite may be sensitive for a time after the procedure
  • Some food and drinks can stain composite fillings

Extractions

There are a number of reasons that tooth extraction may be required:

  • Severely broken, cracked or decayed teeth may be unrestorable or may have a very poor long term outcome.
  • Teeth with severe periodontal disease.
  • Severely infected teeth that are unsuitable for root canal treatment.
  • To create room for other teeth prior to getting braces.
  • Malpositioned or non-functional teeth.

In the majority of case, it is best to attempt to save your natural teeth, however in some cases extraction becomes one of the very few remaining treatment options.

Neural x-ray only look at one or 2 teeth at the time and don't always allow for early detection of problems.

When a tooth is removed, the other teeth tend to shift and become over-stressed and this can impact greatly on your dental health. To avoid further complications, dentists will often recommend replacing any extracted teeth, and although extraction may be the cheapest treatment option available, replacing teeth can easily cost far more than the option of saving and rebuilding a tooth.

Root Canal Treatment

All teeth have a central part known as the 'pulp'. This is the 'living' part of the tooth, which contains the nerves and blood vessels that keep the tooth alive.

Root canal treatment involves the removal of this pulp tissue from the tooth and can be required due to:

Tooth infection - An untreated cavity or a very deep filling can cause bacteria to infect the pulp. This infection may spread to the bone surrounding the tooth and cause an abscess or if left untreated, can spread to other parts of the body and cause very serious medical complications.

Tooth trauma - This can damage the pulp, which may not be able to heal.

The aim of root canal treatment is to remove the infected or damaged pulp in order to save the tooth.

A root canal procedure involves removing all infection and pulp tissue from the tooth's canals using special thin instruments, cleansing and shaping these canals, then filling them with materials made specifically for preventing pain and infection from recurring.

Root Canal Treatment

Root canal treatments can take one or several visits to complete and depend on the severity of the problem or infection. After the procedure, the majority of teeth which have had a root canal treatment will require a crown or protective restoration in order to prevent fracture of the tooth or re-infection from occurring.

If root canal treatment is not carried out, an infected tooth may require an extraction. It is important to consider saving teeth rather than extraction due to the many other dental issues that can develop from missing teeth.

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