Dental Restorations – Treatment, Options, Costs

Excerpt: Many people think dental restorations are only required if you're teeth get damaged or impacted in...

Many people think dental restorations are only required if you’re teeth get damaged or impacted in some negative way. However, even if you’ve never had an oral issue before, there are dental restoration procedures you can benefit from.

What are dental restorations?

Dental restorations are procedures that fix any issues that can happen to teeth. Since people are often born with imperfect smiles these restorations can also be applied to someone who has never had a dental problem. 

A dental issue could be:

  • Fractured/broken/chipped teeth
  • Crooked or uneven teeth
  • Uneven bite
  • Gaps
 
There are many more, these are just a few of the most common ones.

Who needs dental restorations?

Many of the issues listed above can occur naturally in individuals. Teeth can also be impacted, this means they are growing in the wrong way. It’s possible that the tooth may grow in the wrong direction which could potentially damage other nearby teeth.

How do I prepare for a Dental Restoration?

Certain dental preparations will have their own requirements, and depending on how severe the emergency is, you may not have time to prepare for the procedure. However, there are some common preparations you can implement:
 
  • Eat soft foods if it’s painful – This will help to protect the site of the restoration. Especially if it’s an actual emergency, it may cause you pain, so soft foods will lessen the impact of chewing.
  • Clean your mouth beforehand – It will speed up the procedure if you come prepared. Make sure you brush, floss, and mouthwash. Try not to eat for at least a few hours before the procedure, some procedures need up to 12-24 hours of fasting beforehand.
  • Show up early – You’ll probably need to go through paperwork, COVID tests, or other preparations. If you show up early, generally, you can take care of these tasks before the procedure starts, this will save time and you may even get in the chair earlier.

What are the benefits of dental restorations?

There are many benefits that vary between restorations, here are a few:

  • Increased confidence – Missing teeth, bad breath, imperfect smiles, etc. can all promote the feeling of self-consciousness, fixing these issues can greatly increase your body positivity.
  • Better bite – It’s common to have imperfections in your bite, this could be anything from gaps, to uneven teeth. Restorations will help your bite be more uniform which will help save certain teeth from being worn down more than others.
  • Protection from complications – If you have fractures or cavities in your teeth, they could become infected and lead to more serious issues. Minor restorations done earlier can be much less painful than future emergencies.
  • Better speech – Gaps and imperfect bites can create lisps and cause you to trip up on your words. Getting rid of these will most likely help you verbalize words and sounds better. 
 

Not all dental restorations will benefit you the same way, so if you are looking for a specific outcome, consult with a trusted professional and rely on their advice.

What are some dental restoration options?

Bonded Fillings 

Fillings are very common dental restorations. Many individuals will experience at least one cavity in their life. 

They have numerous types of fillings for different reasons, these include:

  • Gold
  • Silver amalgam
  • Resin
 

For fillings, gold isn’t always better than silver or resin, your dentist will know which material will suit your situation. 

You can read more on them here.

Dental Implants

Implants are fixed directly are anchored directly into the gum. These appliances will often have a dental crown on top of them, depending on what the implant is for.

Dental Crowns

Crowns are a “dental cap” that will fit on top of an existing tooth structure. These structures can be used to either fortify an existing tooth that may be prone to breaking, or it can aid in another procedure. Dental bridges are held together with crowns, and root canal therapy is recommended to be finished off with a crown. 

You can read more on crowns here.

Dental Bridges

Bridges can be used to fill a gap when an implant may not be supported by the gums. Assuming there are healthy teeth on either side of the gap, then a bridge is often recommended. 

You can read more on crowns here.

Dentures

Most people are familiar with dentures they might use them, or know someone who uses them. You might be under the impression that dentures are only for the elderly, this is far from the case. 
 

You can read more on crowns here.

Dental restoration complications

Restoration complications are considered rare, but that doesn’t mean they don’t happen, and you should always be aware of what can happen. If future complications do occur, likely the issue is with the restorative appliance that was used. Dental appliances are subjected to intense daily usage, they aren’t perfect and can break over time. 

If your out and an appliance such as a crown breaks, it could be terrible for your tooth. Since crowns are often used to hold things together or cover openings, you will be risking infection, lost teeth (avulsion), or even further breakage.

However, with regular dental checkups and follow-ups, your dentist will be aware to look for these appliances. If you decide to switch dentists, you should always either request your dental records be transferred, or you should let the new dentist know yourself.

recovery time And aftercare for dental restorations

It often depends on how invasive the surgery is. For example, getting a pair of fixed dentures is a much more impactful surgery than getting a singular dental crown. Some restorations will take 2-3 visits and possibly weeks in-between to accommodate the recovery time.
 
Recovery time will generally be a few days to up to a couple of weeks. To promote faster healing, here are a few techniques you can use:

  • Saltwater rinses – Once you are able to rinse with water, adding a quarter teaspoon of salt to warm water can help as an antibacterial agent. Gently swish the solution around in your mouth for 20-30 seconds. Pay particular attention to the restoration site. Then spit out the water gently and then you can use sugar-free gum, a mint, or mouth wash, etc. to get rid of the salty taste.
  • Eat soft foods – Same as the preparations, this will help to ensure you don’t damage the restoration site until it is more stable. Eat soft foods for up to a week or two, depending on what the procedure was.
  • Get plenty of rest – The restoration can put a fair amount of stress on your body, stay away from intense physical activity, and get a few hours extra sleep for at least a few days after the surgery.

When Should I Contact My Dentist After?

If you notice recovery is taking longer than a couple weeks, or experience issues like pain, swelling, bleeding, bad breath, etc. Then you should call your dentist because it may be an indication that the site has become infected, or has not healed properly.

If you have any concerns, dental issues should be checked on right away so they do not snowball into bigger more costly concerns.

How much do dental restorations cost?

Restoration procedures have huge variances in cost, they can range anywhere from  $100-$200 for fillings, or thousands of dollars for special operations like fixed dentures. If you’re curious about our restorative costs, we have some listed here.
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