State-of-the-art Restorative Dentistry in Seattle, WA
Restorative dentistry serves to restore teeth that may have been damaged through common oral health problems or more serious dental issues. Tooth decay, wear, and damage are a natural result from the intense workout and bacterial influx our mouths get every day. Our dentists can restore your damaged teeth with natural-looking materials, like composite resin fillings and porcelain crowns, inlays, and onlays. This means that you can retain an all-white smile. The benefit of restorative dentistry is that many of the procedures overlap with cosmetic dentistry procedures allowing for modern restorations that are designed to improve the look and feel of your smile and enhance your overall appearance. Often time’s restorative dental procedures are a result of a patient who either has overlooked the necessity of routine dental care or has a dental problem that was not visible by the naked eye. This is why we recommend visiting our dental office every six months to check for signs of tooth decay, gum disease or other dental health issues that may be prevented before they become costly or more serious. Below is a list of the common restorative dentistry procedures that we provide to help you with issues that may affect your teeth, gums or smile.
Inlays and onlays are dental restorations that are a good alternative to full coverage crowns. Inlays and onlays are also known as indirect fillings that offer a longer lasting, better fitting, reparative solution to tooth decay, beneficial both esthetically and functionally.
Although inlays and onlays are an alternative to traditional dental fillings, the two are extremely different:
- Traditional Dental Fillings- are molded into place within the mouth during a dental visit until the desired bite and a natural shape is achieved.
- Inlays and Onlays– are fabricated indirectly in a dental lab and then fitted and bonded during a second dental appointment.
Distinguishing from an inlay and an onlay depends on the placement of the material; the restoration is called an “inlay” when the material is placed within the center of a tooth and it is called an “onlay” when the extent of the damage requires full coverage of the biting surface.
There are several benefits of inlays and onlays that are often the deciding factor in choosing them over traditional dental fillings:
- They provide a superior fit by preserving a much healthy tooth as possible.
- They are not likely to discolor over-time.
- They preserve the maximum amount of healthy tooth structure and restore decayed or damaged areas.
- They are easier than full coverage restorative alternatives such as dental crowns.
- They are better at sealing teeth to keep out bacteria.
- They are extremely stable for the treatment of decay and can actually strengthen a damaged tooth.
An inlay or onlay procedure usually takes two dental visits in order to complete; during the first visit, your dentist will prepare the damaged tooth for restoration and a molded impression of the tooth will then be taken and sent in to a dental laboratory where the inlay or onlay will be fabricated.
Your Seattle dentist can create a temporary inlay or onlay at this time to protect the tooth while the permanent inlay or onlay is being fabricated.
During the second visit to the dentist’s office, the temporary inlay or onlay is removed and the permanent one is applied and bonded to the prepared tooth.
Inlays and Onlays can be made from three materials:
- Gold– best if esthetics is not a concern (with back molars or teeth not visible when talking or smiling).
- Porcelain-offer the best esthetics and are often used on teeth visible during a smile.
- Resin Materials– best for people who grind their teeth or those with misaligned bites.
For more information, please contact 32 Good Reasons today.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that provide a permanent base for fixed, replacement teeth. Compared to dentures, bridges and crowns, implants are a popular and effective long-term solution for people who suffer from:
- Missing teeth
- Failing teeth
- Chronic dental problems
Implants fit and function like normal teeth, and are quickly becoming the new standard in tooth replacement. Dental implants involve a small titanium screw that is surgically placed into the jaw bone, acting as a replacement root for teeth.
Implants fit and function like normal teeth, and are quickly becoming the new standard in tooth replacement. Dental implants involve a small titanium screw that is surgically placed into the jaw bone, acting as a replacement root for teeth. Implants can replace single or multiple missing teeth and will eventually fuse to the bone tissue in your gums creating additional support. The use of implants creates a natural looking smile and enhance your appearance.
Patients with missing teeth can replace them with a permanent alternative to traditional dentures that looks and feels like natural teeth. Offered by our Seattle dental office, dental implants are custom fit to your mouth, and help with proper chewing and speaking. As they become permanent fixtures of your mouth, they require no additional maintenance outside of your normal dental routine.
Full Mouth Dental Implants
If you’re missing all of your teeth, an implant-supported full bridge or full dentures can replace them. These implants will replace both your lost natural teeth and some of the roots.
In addition to looking and functioning like natural teeth, implant-supported full bridges (or dentures) are designed to be long lasting. Implant-supported full bridges are more comfortable and stable than conventional dentures, allowing you to retain more natural biting and chewing abilities.
Since implant-supported full bridges and dentures will replace some of your tooth roots, your bone will be better preserved.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Implants can improve the overall look of your smile, granting you with a more polished and natural appearance. Your implants will feel just like natural teeth and involve none of the fears associated with traditional removable restorations that can slip or fall out. Implants are maintained just like your natural teeth and involve minimal downtime and pain. Dental implants also tend to last longer than alternative tooth replacement methods and are known to restore facial structure. Implants can also provide support for existing bridges or dentures.
Dental Implant Procedure
Depending on the number and type of implants, and replacement teeth you receive, the entire process can take anywhere from three to nine months to complete. By scheduling a consultation at our 32 Good Reasons dental office, we can assess your oral health for an implant procedure and make sure that your dental treatment is specific to your needs. Typically the process includes:
The dentist will thoroughly examine your mouth, including taking X-rays, discuss the various implant options, and develop a treatment plan for your implant.
The next step involves the dentist placing the implant in your jawbone where your tooth is missing. Although each patient is unique, typically patients can return to work the next day and resume a fairly normal schedule. Post-implant discomfort is similar to that of any other dental surgery. You may experience some swelling, bruising, minor bleeding and/or pain. Most patients are able to manage and treat these symptoms with over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol and Ibuprofen.
As you heal, your implant and jawbone will grow together during a process called osseointegration , forming a strong foundation for your implant. Overall, the healing process can take several months. Typically patients are on a soft food diet for the first few weeks to ensure the implant heals correctly.
Once your implant is fully healed, and has fused with your jawbone, a small connector (referred to as an abutment) is placed on the implant just above the gumline. In some cases, the abutment can be placed at the same time as the implant.
ATTACHING THE CUSTOM MADE CROWN
After your gums heal, impressions of your mouth and remaining teeth will be made in order to create your custom fitted crown. Although the replacement won’t decay, it’s important to keep up with your preventive and routine care, including checkups and cleanings.
A Dental crown (or cap) is a tooth-shaped “cap” that is placed over a tooth — to cover the tooth to restore its shape and size, strength, and improve its appearance.. A crown protects and strengthens tooth structure that cannot be restored with fillings or other types of restorations.
Why are Dental Crowns Needed?
A dental crown may be needed under the following circumstances:
- Protect a weak tooth from breaking
- Hold together parts of a cracked tooth
- Restore an already broken tooth or a tooth that has been severely worn down
- Cover and support a tooth with a large filling when a lot of tooth support isn’t left
- Hold a dental bridge in place
- Cover a dental implant
- Make a cosmetic modification
What are Dental Crowns Made From?
Crowns are made from several types of materials including metal alloys, ceramics, and porcelain. When a crown is made, the material often is colored to blend in with your natural teeth.
What’s Involved In Placing A Crown?
A crown procedure usually requires two appointments.
First appointment. Your first appointment will include taking several highly accurate molds (or impressions) that will be used to create your custom crown. A mold will also be used to create a temporary crown which will stay on your tooth for approximately two weeks until your new crown is fabricated by a dental laboratory.
While the tooth is numb, the dentist will prepare the tooth by removing any decay and shaping the surface to properly fit the crown. You may get a temporary crown while you wait for the permanent crown to be ready. While you have a temporary crown, the tooth may be sensitive to hot and cold. Avoid chewing gum and eating sticky foods during this time.
Second appointment. At your second appointment, your temporary crown will be removed, the tooth will be cleaned, and your new crown will be carefully placed. You will be given care instructions and will discuss regular dental visits to monitor your new crown.
Although there are several types of crowns, porcelain (tooth colored crown) are the most popular, because they resemble your natural teeth. They are a metal-free dental restoration. They are highly durable and will last many years. Like all dental restorations, they may eventually need to be replaced because your natural tooth is still under the crown and needs to be kept healthy by you doing your part at home.
Missing teeth can cause various problems, from difficulty eating and speaking, to poor nutrition and even self-confidence. There are several options available for replacing lost teeth and improving your smile. One of the options is dental bridges.
Dental bridges are a prosthesis (replacement part) that relies on support from the neighboring healthy teeth surrounding the gap left by a missing tooth or teeth. The healthy adjacent teeth, called abutments, provide support on either side.
Reasons for getting a bridge:
- Fill space of missing teeth
- Maintain facial shape
- Prevent remaining teeth from drifting out of position
- Restore chewing and speaking ability
- Restore your smile
- Upgrade from a removable partial denture to a permanent dental appliance
Contact our office today to schedule an appointment to go over any questions you have for getting a bridge.
Dental bridges are a prosthesis (replacement part) that relies on support from the neighboring healthy teeth surrounding the gap left by a missing tooth or teeth. The healthy adjacent tee, called abutments, provide support on either side.
A composite (tooth colored) filling is used to repair a tooth that is affected by decay, cracks, fractures, etc. The decayed or affected portion of the tooth will be removed and then filled with a composite material that matches your tooth color. There are many types of filling materials available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Composite fillings are the most widely used today.
What are Composite Fillings?
A composite (tooth colored) filling is used to repair a tooth that is affected by decay, cracks, fractures, etc. The decayed or affected portion of the tooth will be removed and then filled with a composite material that matches your tooth color.
There are many types of filling materials available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
Composite fillings are the most widely used today. Because composite fillings are tooth colored, they can be closely matched to the color of existing teeth, they are conservative and are bonded directly to your own natural tooth structure.
Tooth colored fillings are more aesthetically suited for use in front teeth or the more visible areas of the teeth. As with most dental restorations, composite fillings are not permanent and may someday have to be replaced. Yet they are very durable, and will last many years, giving you a long lasting, beautiful smile.
Reasons for composite fillings:
- Chipped teeth
- Closing space between two teeth
- Cracked or broken teeth
- Decayed teeth
- Worn teeth
How are composite fillings placed?
Composite fillings are usually placed in one appointment.
While the tooth is numb, your dentist will carefully and conservatively remove the damaged part of your tooth. The space will then be thoroughly cleaned and carefully prepared before the new filling is placed. If the decay was near the nerve of the tooth, a special medication might need to be applied for added protection. The composite filling will then be precisely placed, shaped, and polished, restoring your tooth to its original shape and function.
It is normal to experience sensitivity to hot and cold when composite fillings are first placed, however this will subside over time shortly after your tooth acclimates to the new filling. It is note-worthy, the bacteria from the cavity might have damaged the nerve although the damage is not visible. Time and your symptoms will indicate if further treatment will be needed.
You will be given care instructions at the conclusion of your treatment. Good oral hygiene practices, eating habits, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new fillings.
Because composite fillings are tooth colored, they can be closely matched to the color of existing teeth, they are conservative and are bonded directly to your own natural tooth structure
Whether lost due to decay, accident, injury, or just the natural aging process, missing teeth affect the way you look and feel. Even worse, they can lead to lifelong health problems, including an increased risk of gum disease and irreversible bone loss in the jaw.
At 32 Good Reasons, we offer high-tech and custom-made dentures designed to look great and restore the health and function of your smile!
Talk to Dr. Barrett and Dr. Schwedhelm today if you’re…
- Missing 1 or more teeth in your mouth
- Unhappy with the appearance of your smile
- Having trouble eating or speaking due to missing teeth
- Unhappy with your current denture
A confident, radiant smile is always important, but it’s especially important for patients wearing dentures. Everyone has a different and unique mouth structure. For that reason we create customized dentures for every patient, ensuring a natural and aesthetically pleasing look.
What are Dentures?
If you have missing teeth, dentures could be your ticket back to a beautiful smile. Dentures are natural-looking, removable teeth that are attached to an aesthetically pleasing frame. They are a great solution for those who have lost their teeth from gum disease, tooth decay, or an accident. There are two different types of dentures; full and partial.
Full Dentures – Complete and Immediate
Complete dentures, also known as conventional dentures, are given to those who have had all of their teeth removed. Conventional full dentures can be placed into the patient’s mouth once the gums have fully healed. Gums may need to heal after tooth extraction or any physical injury to the gums. Healing can take anywhere from 8 to 12 weeks.
Immediate dentures are different in that the patient does not have to go without teeth for a period of time. They are made in advance and can be placed into the patient’s mouth right away. As the mouth heals, partial adjustments may be required to the immediate dentures.
Dentures can also be supported by implants, in which case they are fixed to the jawbone and not removable by the patient.
Partial dentures are used when the patient has lost only some teeth. They are replacement teeth attached to a naturally pink gum base. Because the teeth gaps may be in different locations, this removable denture is typically connected by a metal framework. Partial dentures are crucial because they help to fill in teeth gaps as well as prevent other teeth from shifting positions. The partial dentures will be customized for the patient’s mouth structure.
Dentures Procedure – How It Works
Initial Appointment: Your first appointment includes a thorough examination of your gums and teeth to see if you are a good candidate for dentures.
Mold Replica: In order to create dentures that are a perfect fit for your mouth, a mold replica will be created using dental putty. This mold is then sent to a professional laboratory for denture creation.
Fitting Appointment: Once your dentures are ready for use, you will come in for a second visit to get your dentures fitted and adjusted as needed.