When teeth have been damaged or are missing, there are many options to repair or replace them. This includes:
- Dental Restorations
- Endodontic treatment (root canal fillings)
- Crowns, onlays, inlays and veneers
- Dental bridges
- Dental implants
Dental restorations or fillings are the way in which we repair and restore broken down teeth. At the Clinic, we do not use dental amalgam and instead use a variety of tooth coloured materials.
We use composite restorations predominately for restoring teeth. They are tooth coloured restorations which are durable and aesthetically pleasing.
When restorations are extensive, we may consider using porcelain (or other materials) to replace them which is a much stronger material.
At the Clinic, we now are proud to present our CEREC machine. This allows us to create accurate, aesthetic restorations in a single visit.
Root Canal Treatment
Root canal treatment (RCT) involves removing infected tissue from your tooth, cleaning the root canal and then filling it to prevent further damage or infection. Root canal treatment can save your tooth from having to be taken out.
In the centre of your tooth, there is a canal containing blood vessels and nerves called pulp. Each tooth can have one or more root canals. Your front teeth often have just one root canal, whereas your back teeth may have three or more.
The pulp in your tooth can become infected with bacteria if your tooth becomes damaged.
This can happen in a number of ways. These include:
- severe tooth decay
- an injury, such as a blow to your mouth
- cracked or loose fillings, or repeated fillings in your tooth
- gum disease
If the pulp in your tooth becomes infected this can spread to the root canal which can become very painful. If the infection spreads further it can cause a tooth or dental abscess, which is a collection of pus. This can be painful and tender when you bite down on your tooth and can cause swelling around your tooth and jaw.
The aim of root canal treatment is to remove the damaged pulp and bacteria that is causing the infection. Your dentist will access the root canal and remove the pulp and infected tissue, then clean and fill the empty root canal and put a permanent seal over the top of your tooth.
Root canal treatments may need to have treatment over more than one session. How long your treatment takes will depend on how severe your dental problem is and the type of tooth in question. If your affected tooth is a molar with two or three root canals, the treatment may be more difficult and involve more sessions.
Bridges are a fixed solution when there is a missing tooth. The teeth adjacent to the missing tooth support the bridge.
There are different types of bridges available and we need to carefully assess each patient to see whether bridges are suitable for them.
Fixed bridges have been around for many years and can have a good success rate. The false tooth can either be supported by one tooth or by two teeth.
Even though bridges can be very successful they do involve the tooth or the teeth supporting the bridge being trimmed down. This means that this option can be quite destructive.
Maryland bridges provide us with a fixed option to replace a missing tooth. A false tooth is supported by a metal wing which is “bonded” to an adjacent tooth. Maryland bridges are often used to replace missing front teeth.
Dentures are available in different materials and provide a cost-effective option of replacing missing teeth. Dentures are removable appliances and can be used to replace a single tooth or several missing teeth.
There are three main groups of denture types:
- Acrylic Dentures
- Colbolt Chrome Dentures
- Flexible Dentures
If you are interested in dentures we can go through the different properties of the denture types so you can pick the best appliance for you.