Prosthetic dental procedures involve restoring damaged or missing teeth with aesthetic replacements giving back a patient’s smile and confidence. Prosthodontics procedures are commonly completed at general dental offices such as NKC Dental.
At some point in time most people will suffer tooth loss – it might be only one tooth or it could possibly be several teeth. This can cause embarrassment and lack of self-confidence, especially when speaking or eating. Many people seek prosthetic teeth replacements for cosmetic purposes, but if you are missing teeth due to a medical condition such as periodontal (gum) disease, infection or damaged teeth you want those teeth replaced so you can smile, speak and eat normally. Furthermore you don’t want to lose any more teeth.
There are several different types of prosthetic materials commonly used to replace damaged or missing teeth. The most common types of prosthetic teeth used to restore missing or damaged teeth are the following:
• Crowns – To restore injured or broken teeth dental crowns are usually a first choice for a prosthetic tooth. Crowns are placed with cement as a cap over an existing tooth. The actual crown can be made from metal, porcelain or a combination of the two, but so as not to see a dark line from the metal, most dentists and patients prefer the all porcelain crowns. Crowns allow patients to enjoy the convenience of eating, speaking and smiling without any problems. Crowns can be color matched to your own teeth for a perfectly natural look.
• Bridges – Dental bridges replace missing teeth with a short row of prosthetic teeth (usually 3-4) that rely on the strength of the surrounding teeth to help stabilize the bite. Unfortunately a tooth on either side of the bridge has to be sacrificed to accommodate the bridge. Bridges also help keep surrounding teeth from moving into the open space of the missing tooth. The next-door teeth are prepared for the bridge, which is then attached to the teeth. Bridges are permanent and provide functionality and an aesthetic appearance especially because they can be completely matched to your own teeth.
• Dentures – Dentures are for people who have lost many or all of their teeth and they are usually used to replace an entire arch of teeth. Dentures can be removable or fixed if attached to titanium roots placed in the jawbone. They can be partial or full, depending on each patient’s needs and preferences. Dentures can be treated just like your natural teeth but require special care and adjustment when they are removable. Dr. Busch will make sure the hue of your dentures is matched to your original teeth.
• Implants – Dental implants are small titanium screws that are drilled into the jaw bone to replace missing teeth. The implant serves as the root of a replacement tooth and can be covered by a crown, bridge or dentures, matched in hue to your own teeth, to provide a natural-looking replacement for the missing tooth. The implant is first placed into the jaw and then allowed to fuse with the bone before the prosthetic is placed on top. Implants provide long-lasting support that most closely replaces the individual strength and stability of your natural teeth.
Dr. Busch is skilled in all of these procedures and he will help you decide which type of prosthetic tooth is right for you and your dental needs. It usually takes two or more appointments for a prosthetic replacement to be completed depending on the complexity of your individual treatment.