Your teeth rank as the toughest and most durable part of the body. However, a lifetime of use, wear, and decay can cause a once resilient smile to suffer some damage. Cracked, chipped, broken, or decayed teeth can seriously threaten your long-term oral and overall health. Not only do these types of oral health problems cause serious discomfort, they also place additional strain on your jaw and surrounding teeth that can increase your risk of future problems.
For patients who need restorative dental care, Dr. Jennifer McLeod and her team at Newberg Family Dental offers the latest techniques, tools and services to help eliminate tooth-related pain and get your teeth and gums back to normal health! Get the best dental care Newberg, Oregon has to offer!
New and Replacement Fillings
A filling offers Dr. McLeod the ability to repair a tooth damaged by decay and restore it back to its natural form and function. When Dr. McLeod places a filling, she first removes the decayed tooth structure, cleans the area impacted by the decay, before finally filling the now cleaned out cavity with a filling.
By eliminating the space where bacteria can enter, a filling helps to reduce the risk of future decay. Many different materials can be utilized (i.e. amalgam or “silver” material, gold, tooth-colored composite, etc.) as a filling depending on the location of the cavity and the aesthetic desires of the patient.
If the damage caused by decay has affected a large portion of the tooth, Dr. McLeod may recommend the placement of a cap or crown. Decay that has reached the root of a tooth can be treated either through root canal therapy or dental implant.
Dental crowns are used to strengthen weakened or broken teeth. In addition to strengthening a damaged tooth, Dr. McLeod can place a crown to improve the alignment, shape, or appearance a tooth. Crowns can also be placed on top of a dental implant to provide a tooth-like structure and shape, and improve function. Crowns are designed to mimic the natural shape and color of the tooth. If installed correctly, many crowns will last a lifetime, and provide the healthy smile patients desire..
Dr. McLeod may recommend a crown for patients who need to:
- Replace a large filling when not enough natural tooth structure remains
- Protect a damaged tooth from fracturing
- Repair a fractured tooth
- Attach a bridge
- Cover an implant
- Cover a tooth that has received root canal treatment
Dr. McLeod may recommend a dental bridge for patients who are missing one or more teeth. Gaps left by missing teeth will eventually cause the remaining teeth to shift or rotate to fill those empty spaces, resulting in the development of a bad bite. The resulting imbalance caused by missing teeth can also increase a patient's risk for TMJ disorders and gum disease.
Dental bridges are used to replace a missing tooth or several teeth in a section of the mouth. Bridges cover the space created by the missing teeth. Bridges are affixed to the remaining natural teeth or implants that surround the space in a patient's smile. These teeth, referred to as abutments, act as an anchor for the bridge. As with crowns, patients have a choice in the type of material used to make a bridge. Dr. McLeod can help patients decide on the right material to use, based on the location of the missing teeth, the bridge's functions, and cost.
Dentures serve the role as a replacement for missing teeth that can be removed and put back into a patient's mouth. While it might take some time for a patient to get used to wearing denture, and they will never feel exactly like natural teeth, dentures today look more natural and feel more comfortable than ever before.
A partial denture sits on a metal framework that attaches to your natural teeth. As with a bridge, partials are anchored to the adjacent teeth. The difference between a bridge and a partial is that the latter is removable, where a bridge is not. Partials are an economical way to replace multiple missing teeth.
A well-fitted denture will look and function like natural teeth for the patient. With the addition of implants to anchor dentures, many of the problems with loose-fitting dentures are eliminated.
Dental implants are metal posts that are surgically placed into a patient's jawbone directly beneath the existing gum tissue. Since implants fuse directly to the jawbone, they provide a stable base for the placement of artificial teeth, such as crowns. Bridges or dentures placed on top of an implant won't shift or slip in the mouth, an especially important benefit when speaking and eating. The secure fit that implants provide bridges and dentures, in addition to individual crowns placed over implants, feel far more natural when compared to conventional dentures or bridges.
To be a candidate for implant placement, patients need to have adequate bone structure remaining to support the placement of an implant and healthy gum tissue. Patients who receive an implant must also make a commitment to maintaining and improving their oral health. Daily oral hygiene and regular scheduled visits to Newberg Family Dental are vital to ensuring the long-term success of a dental implant.