Dental restorations are prostheses used to make changes to the contour, structural integrity, and functionality of the teeth. They are usually made from dental-grade ceramic or composite resin that is tooth-colored, which helps to keep them under disguise against the natural enamel. Some of the commonly used dental restorations are crowns, bridges, veneers, composite bonding, fillings, dentures, inlays, onlays, etc.
What are crowns?
Crowns are one of the most versatile restorations in the world of dentistry. They are hollow on the side and resemble the appearance of a natural tooth on the outside, allowing the dentist to place them over natural teeth and restore them as required. Crowns are popularly used to restore teeth that are cracked, broken, chipped, naturally misshapen, weak, worn out, or severely damaged. They are custom-fabricated according to the contour of the natural teeth, making them quite indistinguishable.
Dental bridges, implants, and dentures
Dental bridges are the simplest means to replace missing teeth. They are made from dental-grade, tooth-colored ceramic material, which is highly customizable and long-lasting. A bridge is a combination of a solid prosthetic tooth and ceramic crowns on either side, which help to hold it stably in position. Implants are also used to replace missing teeth but are different from bridges. They are placed directly in the jawbone in place of the missing tooth using a metal implant stud. A ceramic crown is attached to it using dental adhesives and a connecting abutment. Dentures are used when the patient is missing a large number of teeth. They are made from acrylic and ceramic, which mimic the gums and teeth, respectively.
Veneers are wafer-thin prosthetics bonded to the teeth on their frontal surface. They are primarily used to make cosmetic changes to the teeth, such as covering the surface imperfections, cracks, severe discoloration, etc. They are also used to restore misshapen, chipped, or excessively spaced teeth. They are relatively easier to fabricate and bond to the teeth. Although they are quite thin, veneers offer excellent durability and strength.
Fillings are used to fill cavities caused due to tooth decay. They are made from tooth-colored ceramic or composite resin that can be customized to mimic the aesthetics of your natural teeth. The dentist will thoroughly remove the decay and tartar deposits from the cavity and fill it with a suitable filling material. It will then be trimmed and hardened, after which we will polish it to enhance its aesthetics.
Inlays and onlays
Inlays are alternatives to fillings and are used when the size of the cavity is too large to be filled using filling material. They are custom-fabricated according to the shape of the cavity after taking precise digital impressions. Placing inlays instead of fillings will restore the strength of the tooth and keep it resistant to damage. Onlays are used to restore the cusp or biting surface of the teeth - especially the molars and premolars. They are popularly known as half-crowns as they fix only the upper half portion of the teeth.
You may schedule a consultation with Dr. Alvarez and our team of dental experts by calling us at (210) 396-7667 or reaching us through an online query. We’re always happy to help.