Restorative dentistry involves the use of bridges, crowns, dentures, and bonding procedures to restore the structure of a person's mouth after one or more teeth have been lost or damaged. When a person loses one or more teeth due to decay, damage, or an illness, the teeth that are on either side of the gap may begin to shift. When the teeth move away from their natural position, it can disrupt the alignment of the jaw causing inflammation, intense pain, and discomfort. Restorative dentistry uses appliances, both temporary and permanent, to fill in the gaps and act as abutments to keep the teeth on either side of the gap in their natural position.
Bonding is an aesthetic procedure that involves the use of a composite resin that is placed on the teeth to whiten them or repair small cracks and damaged areas. It can also be used to close gaps and reshape the tooth to make it look more appealing. The composite material is placed over a gel-like substance and then attached to the surface of the tooth. The composite/gel cover must be cured or bonded to the surface of the tooth. The bonding process uses an LED light to cure or harden the polymers and secure the covering to the surface of the tooth. Once the covering is put in place and adjusted to its proper position, the dentist will turn on the LED light for several minutes, allowing the matrix to harden to the surface of the tooth.
Bridges and crowns are designed to fill in the gaps between the teeth. Teeth can be lost in many ways. They can be lost to decay, damage that is caused by medications, or through accidents that have resulted in them being knocked out. When a gap is created, the teeth nearest to it will begin to shift. Replacing the lost teeth with bridges and crowns restores the integrity and structure of the mouth, keeping it as close to natural as possible. Many people choose to have bridges and crowns put in place even if the other teeth do not move. Replacing the lost teeth with bridges and crowns restores their smile and improves the overall look of the mouth.
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