Your smile contributes to your happiness, health, and self-esteem. Unfortunately, tooth decay, tooth loss, and discoloring cause some to feel self-conscious and hesitant about smiling. But dental issues do not need to keep your beautiful smile hidden from the world! There are many treatment options to restore your teeth and your confidence. In fact, many of these treatments improve both the look of your teeth and your overall dental health and smile.
Colorado Springs based Colorado Laser Dentistry offers a wide range of treatments to restore our patients’ dental smiles. Here are some of the treatments available to meet the needs of you and your family.
A missing tooth can cause embarrassment, discomfort, and potentially more serious dental issues. There are several effective treatments, however, that can restore your smile.
If a tooth is lost, there are several restorative options. Bridges involve replacing the missing tooth and the two adjacent teeth with three connected porcelain teeth and a metal substructure. The bridge stabilizes the replacement tooth and appears as three normal teeth. Bridges take two or three visits to prepare and place.
If there is sufficient bone left under a missing tooth, an implant could be a good option. An implant is an artificial tooth root that is attached to the bone and then covered with a porcelain tooth, bridge, or partial dentures. Implants are a permanent treatment and can only be removed by a dental professional. As with any medical procedure, there are complications that can arise (the implant could be rejected by the mouth, smoking could cause failure, e.g.), but, for many patients, implants are a good option and cause little to no discomfort after healing.
There are two types of removable dentures: immediate and conventional. Immediate dentures are used after a patient’s natural teeth are completely removed and replaced with a full set of artificial teeth whitened dentures the same day. Conventional dentures are either complete or partial artificial teeth that are generally used to replace immediate dentures once the tissue has healed. Partial dentures replace a section of missing teeth. Both partial and conventional dentures can also be permanently implanted in some cases.
There are a number of treatments for teeth that are damaged but not yet lost.
A crown is used when the entire structure of a tooth has been compromised. An outer shell, or crown, is placed over the existing tooth once its size has been reduced. The crown is cemented to the remaining tooth and fits right in with the natural characteristics of the other teeth. We can usually achieve outstanding results with crowns.
When a tooth is beginning to deteriorate but retains its overall integrity, a filling can be used to prevent further decay. Failing to treat a cavity early can lead to more serious tooth deterioration or even the loss of the tooth altogether. There are four types of fillings: amalgam, composite, gold, and porcelain. Which filling is appropriate depends on the location, function, and cost. Fillings have been a common treatment around the world for decades because of their reliability and cost-effectiveness.
Onlays and Inlays
Onlays and inlays are treatments for damaged molars. When back teeth lose one or more of their cusps (the four points on the top of a molar), onlays can be used to restore the missing cusp(s). If the cusps are sound but the inner tooth is decaying, inlays can be used to restore the integrity of the tooth.
Small chips or other minor dental defects can often be treated with bonding. Bonding allows a dentist to smooth out, recolor, and reshape a damaged tooth to restore its appearance.
There are many options for improving the appearance of otherwise healthy teeth.
Discoloring can result from many things: diet, smoking, age, trauma, or medications. Some of the best ways of keeping your teeth white are brushing regularly, having routine cleanings performed by a dentist, and altering diet. If you are still dissatisfied with the appearance of your teeth, your dentist can whiten them from the inside (if you’ve had a root canal) or the outside. The most common method involves a 30-60 minute treatment of whitening gel and light. Teeth whitening is not for everyone, though, so ask Dr. Harrison or our staff about your teeth whitening options.
Veneers are thin porcelain overlays that can be used to adjust the color, shape, length, and spacing of teeth. Veneers are generally unnoticeable and restore teeth to their natural pearly white.
Lumineers or Minimal/No-Prep Veneers
Lumineers are an advanced type of veneers that are custom-designed, long-lasting, and reversible. Talk to Dr. Harrison or his staff about the benefits are using Lumineers or Minimal/No-Prep Veneers over traditional veneer treatments.
Serving the surrounding Colorado Springs communities, Colorado Laser Dentistry provides numerous teeth whitening solutions and other dental needs to augment your daily smile. Please explore our site to learn more about dental health!
To find out more about our cosmetic dental services or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Harrison, please call us at (719) 528-6222.