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What Is Restorative Dentistry?

Dentures Dentistry thumbnail Louisville, KY | Natural Smiles

Have your teeth become a little worse for wear? Do they no longer function or look as they should? Or perhaps you have an area of decay that must be repaired — or even a tooth that’s missing altogether.

From a simple filling to a crown to a bridge, restorative dentistry procedures are designed to bring your teeth back to their full health, beauty, and function.

At Natural Smiles of Louisville, KY, Dr. Kiran Gill is skilled in a range of restorative dentistry techniques. To book a consultation for restorative dentistry — or any of our dental services — call our office at 502-785-8695.

 

Dental Fillings

A dental filling repairs a cavity, or an area of decay on your tooth. First, Dr. Gill will remove any decayed material from the cavity. She will thoroughly clean out the area, and fill the space with a composite filling material.

By using a filling, we close off the cavity and prevent bacteria from entering the tooth and causing further decay.

A filling is typically performed using local anesthesia, so you won’t feel a thing.

At Natural Smiles, we use composite fillings only. This durable material is precisely matched to the color of your teeth, so it is not noticeable, even if placed in a visible area of the mouth. No more metal on display every time you open your mouth!

 

Dental Crowns

A dental crown is a large cap — custom made to match the exact contours of the tooth— that fits over the entire tooth from the gum line.

You may need a crown if your tooth is broken or cracked, weakened, or to reinforce a tooth that has a large filling. Crowns may also be used along with dental bridges, to top dental implants, and even to cover cosmetic complaints like severe staining.  

At Natural Smiles, our crowns are constructed out of durable and gorgeously lifelike porcelain. Your crown will be a precise match to your natural tooth color. In the past, dental crowns required a metal base, which would lead to discoloration. This is no longer the case. So your crown will remain functional and beautiful for years.

 

Dental Inlays and Onlays

Dental inlays and onlays are restorations that may be a good choice if your area of damage is a bit large for a filling, but not necessarily big enough that it requires a crown.

Dental inlays and onlays are custom-crafted (at an outside lab, from impressions that Dr. Gill has made of your teeth) out of porcelain to be an exact match to your tooth shape and color.

A dental inlay covers just the areas between the cusps, or in the grooves of the teeth.

A dental onlay is used for more extensive damage than a dental inlay. It covers the space between the cusps, along with more of the tooth’s surface area.

 

Dental Veneers

You may be surprised to see dental veneers on this list. After all, they are cosmetic, not restorative, right? While veneers are commonly used as a cosmetic procedure — and they have definite cosmetic benefits — they also may be used as a restorative technique.

Dental veneers are thin shells of porcelain that are permanently bonded to the fronts of the teeth. They deliver a flawless appearance (which is why they are so popular with celebrities), but also cover chips, cracks, and protect weak enamel from further damage.

 

Dental Bridges

A dental bridge is a technique for replacing a missing tooth or multiple teeth. It restores your stunning smile, facial shape, and the tooth’s function. It also prevents other teeth from drifting out of place.

A bridge uses the two teeth (called “abutment” teeth) adjoining the gap to support a “bridge” constructed of dental crowns and a realistic-looking replacement tooth.

Your abutment teeth will need a small amount of enamel removed in preparation for your bridge. Dr. Gill will take impressions of your teeth, and these will be sent to a laboratory, where the other components of the bridge will be constructed. A temporary bridge may be used to protect your teeth until the permanent one is ready.

At Natural Smiles, we use only ceramic and porcelain for crafting our bridges. They are completely metal-free.

If you live in our around the Louisville, KY area, call Natural Smiles for all your restorative dentistry — and general dentistry — needs. To book an appointment, fill out our convenient web form and we will get back to you promptly. Or call our office at 502-785-8695.