Crowns: When a tooth is weakened by a root canal, or when a filling cannot be supported by the remaining tooth structure, a crown is necessary. Sometimes the problem is a cracked tooth, or a tooth that is at risk for cracking. In this case, the crown helps prevent problems such as pain and/or the need for a root canal, and works as a protective cover. Once cemented on, it is stationary and adds extra strength to your tooth structure, as well as improving the appearance of the tooth.
Dentures: When multiple teeth are missing and the remaining teeth are unsalvageable, a full denture may be recommended. Dentures, as a “substitute” set of teeth, can improve your smile and add support to your lips. However, dentures must be taken out at night, may cause some discomfort, and will eventually require replacement.
Porcelain Veneers: When front teeth are chipped, misshaped, or have gaps between them porcelain veneers are another option to improve your smile. This type of restoration requires some removal of tooth structure, which makes room for a thin layer of porcelain to be placed over top of the tooth. Unlike bonding, veneers do not stain and can last a lifetime.
Fixed Bridges: When teeth are missing, a dental bridge does exactly what the word implies – it bridges across an empty space. A fixed bridge is anchored from one strong tooth to another strong tooth and fills the gap left by the missing teeth. It is stationary (so you don’t need to take it out at night), comfortable and looks like your natural teeth.
Tooth Colored Fillings: When you get a cavity, the decay is removed and if there is enough tooth structure left, the hole is filled with a “filling.” Tooth colored fillings are not only more aesthetically pleasing than silver fillings, but are also more conservative in how much healthy tooth structure is removed. This is important, because a tooth that has more of its natural structure is stronger. Therefore, it is less likely that a crown or root canal will be required in the future.
Bonding: When front teeth are chipped, misshaped, or have gaps between them, bonding may be an option to improve your smile. This approach is more conservative in its removal of tooth structure; however, over time, bonding will stain and therefore need to be replaced.
Whitening: Over time, your teeth will stain and become darker. Sometimes even certain medications can cause your teeth to become dark. Whitening is the process of removing those deep stains and making them lighter. Today there are many options, including the immediate results of an in office procedure, or the control of a 2-week take home set of trays. Since dental restorations do not lighten, it is important to consider getting your teeth whitened prior to any cosmetic dental work.