We all know the importance of maintaining a healthy smile, but sometimes we can overlook the essential services that general dentistry offers to keep our teeth in top shape. From routine check-ups and cleanings to more complex procedures like crowns and bridges, there are several dental treatments you should be aware of.
Regular dental exams and cleanings are fundamental components of good oral health. These routine check-ups allow your dentist to detect any potential issues with your teeth or gums before they become more serious problems.
During a dental exam, your dentist will thoroughly examine your mouth for signs of tooth decay, gum disease, or other abnormalities. They may also take X-rays to get a closer look at the underlying structure of your teeth. Once the examination is complete, it's time for the cleaning. Dental cleanings remove plaque and tartar buildup that can lead to cavities and gum disease if left untreated. Your hygienist will use specialized tools to scrape away the buildup from hard-to-reach areas in your mouth.
Afterward, you'll leave feeling refreshed with cleaner teeth and healthier gums. Regular dental exams and cleanings should be scheduled every six months as part of an overall preventive care plan to maintain optimal oral health.
Fillings are one of the most common dental procedures and are typically used to restore teeth damaged by decay. The process involves removing the decayed part of the tooth, cleaning it, and then filling it with a material such as composite resin or amalgam.
One major benefit of fillings is that they can help prevent further damage to your teeth. If left untreated, cavities can eventually lead to more serious problems, such as infections and abscesses. By filling the cavity early on, your dentist can help prevent these issues from developing.
Another advantage of fillings is that they are fairly quick and easy to perform. In most cases, you'll be in and out of your dentist's office in under an hour. Plus, once the filling is in place, it should last for many years with proper care.
There are also several different types of fillings available today. Composite resin fillings are often preferred because they blend in with your natural tooth color and look more aesthetically pleasing than traditional silver amalgam fillings.
If you have a cavity or other minor damage to your teeth, getting a filling may be just what you need to restore them back to their original health and beauty!
Crowns are a common solution for teeth that have been damaged or weakened. They cover the entire tooth, providing strength and protection to prevent further damage. Crowns can be made from various materials such as porcelain, metal, or a combination of both.
Getting a crown typically requires two visits to the dentist's office. During the first visit, the tooth is prepared by removing any decayed or damaged parts and reshaping it to fit the crown. An impression is taken of the prepared tooth and sent to a dental lab where the permanent crown will be created.
In some cases, a temporary crown may be placed over the prepared tooth until the final restoration is ready. Once completed, you return for your second appointment, where your new custom-made crown will be permanently cemented in place.
Crowns not only provide structural support but also improve appearance since they look like natural teeth. Proper care should always be given by brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste along with flossing once daily around crowns at least once per day.
Whether you need a single crown or multiple crowns installed to help restore your smile back to its best version - this procedure has proven results that last for years!
Bridges are a common solution to replace one or more missing teeth. A bridge consists of two crowns that are placed over the adjacent healthy teeth and a pontic, which is the replacement tooth or teeth that fill in the gap.
One of the benefits of bridges is that they can help restore your ability to chew and speak properly. Missing teeth can affect your speech and make it difficult to eat certain foods, so getting a bridge can improve these functions.
Another advantage of bridges is their natural-looking appearance. Bridges are made from materials like porcelain or ceramic that mimic the look and feel of real teeth, making them virtually indistinguishable from your natural ones.
Getting a bridge typically requires two appointments with your dentist: one to prepare the supporting teeth for crown placement and another to place the final restoration.
It's important to take good care of your bridge by brushing twice daily and flossing regularly. With proper care, bridges can last for many years before needing replacement.
If you're missing one or more teeth, talk with your dentist about whether a bridge may be right for you. They'll be able to evaluate your specific needs and recommend an appropriate treatment plan based on factors like cost, durability, esthetics, oral health status, etc.
Dentures are removable dental appliances that can replace missing teeth and restore your smile. They come in both full and partial options, depending on the number of teeth that need to be replaced.
One of the benefits of dentures is their affordability compared to other tooth replacement options like implants or bridges. Dentures are also a non-invasive solution, meaning you won't have to undergo surgery or any invasive procedures.
If you opt for dentures, it's important to keep them clean by removing and brushing them daily. You should also visit your dentist regularly for adjustments as needed.
While dentures may take some time to get used to, they can significantly improve your quality of life by restoring your ability to eat comfortably and speak clearly. Plus, with proper care, they can last for several years.
If you're missing teeth or experiencing difficulty eating or speaking due to dental issues, dentures may be a viable solution worth considering.
To learn more, please schedule an appointment online or call All Smiles Family Dentistry at (319) 553-3085 to have a consultation with Dr. Jennifer A. Stevenson or Dr. Sarah Cyr, and we will be happy to help.