We offer the following restorative dental procedures at Dental Arts Center in Colorado Springs:
Crowns and Bridges
When teeth are heavily decayed they may be too weak to survive with just a filling. By placing a crown, a tooth may be given a new lease of life. Even when a single tooth is lost a denture may not be required as a bridge can be made which spans the gap with a tooth attached to those next to the space. Sometimes when a single small tooth is lost at the front of the mouth a simple bridge can be made which has 'wings' that are glued to the back of the adjacent teeth. This results in less tooth being damaged by the drill.
When a tooth is heavily decayed it is more likely to fracture and lose considerable tooth substance. The greater risk is that a fracture line may go below the margin of the gum which makes restoration more difficult or near impossible.Crowns may be made from several different materials, gold and porcelain being the most common types.
Bridges are similar to crowns and do all the functions of a crown plus they also replace missing teeth. A bridge is basically two crowns connected by a "dummy" tooth (teeth) that replaces the missing tooth (teeth). The bridge helps prevent the teeth from drifting and tilting into the space opened up by the missing tooth. This tends to create an uneven bite, difficult areas to clean and sensitivity due to the exposure of the root surface to the oral environment.
Root canal treatment is necessary when the pulp becomes inflamed or infected. The inflammation or infection can have a variety of causes: deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, or a crack or chip in the tooth. In addition, a blow to a tooth may cause pulp damage even if the tooth has no visible chips or cracks. If pulp inflammation or infection is left untreated, it can cause pain or lead to an abscess.
Signs of pulp damage include pain, prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold, discoloration of the tooth, and swelling and tenderness in the nearby gums. Sometimes, there are no symptoms.
HOW DOES ROOT CANAL TREATMENT SAVE THE TOOTH?
Dr. Golomb removes the inflamed or infected pulp, carefully cleans and shapes the inside of the tooth, then fills and seals the space. Next, we will place a crown or other restoration on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function. After restoration, the tooth continues to function like any other tooth.
WHAT IS PERIODONTAL DISEASE?
The word periodontal literally means "around the tooth." Healthy gum tissue fits like a cuff around each tooth. Where the gum line meets the tooth, it forms a slight v-shaped crevice called a sulcus. In healthy teeth, this space is usually three millimeters or less.Periodontal diseases are infections that affect the tissues and bone that support teeth. As the tissues are damaged, the sulcus develops into a pocket that is greater than three millimeters. Generally, the more severe the disease, the greater the pocket depth and bone loss. The enlarged pockets allow harmful bacteria to grow and make it difficult to practice effective oral hygiene. Left untreated, periodontal diseases may eventually lead to tooth loss.
WHAT CAUSES PERIODONTAL DISEASES?
The mouth is filled with countless bacteria. Periodontal disease begins when certain bacteria in plaque (the sticky, colorless film that constantly forms on the teeth and the surfaces lining the mouth) produce toxins and enzymes that irritate the gums and cause inflammation. The resulting inflammation, which may be painless, can damage the attachment of the gums and bone to the tooth.Good oral hygiene - brushing twice a day and flossing or using another interdental cleaner once a day - helps reduce the plaque film. Plaque that is not removed regularly can harden into rough porous deposits called calculus, or tartar. Tartar is not the main cause of periodontal diseases, but the pores in tartar hold bacteria and toxins, which are impossible to remove even with regular brushing. Once the hardened tartar forms, it can only be removed when teeth are cleaned professionally at the dental office.
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root placed into the jaw to hold a replacement tooth or bridge in place, or to provide support for a denture.
Dental implants are the answer for many people with missing or damaged teeth - they look and feel just like your own teeth. Implants enhance smiles and prevent bone loss that often accompanies dentures.
REMOVABLE PARTIAL DENTURES
An important step in maintaining a healthy smile is to replace missing teeth. When teeth are missing, the remaining ones can change position, drifting into the surrounding space. Teeth that are out of position can damage tissues in the mouth. In addition, it may be difficult to clean thoroughly between crooked teeth. As a result, you run the risk of tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease, which can lead to the loss of additional teeth. In situations where only some teeth are missing we can also use a Removable Partial Denture.
A removable partial denture fills in the space created by missing teeth and fills out your smile. It is usually used when the space without teeth is too large for a bridge,or there are no teeth on either side of the gap or for economic reasons.The partial denture locks into place with its metal clasps.A denture helps you to properly chew food, a difficult task when you are missing teeth. In addition, a denture may improve speech and prevent a sagging face by providing support for lips and cheeks.
There are two types of these: ones made fully of plastic (acrylic) or ones having a metal framework for rigidity and the teeth are the same kind used in full dentures.The latter ones are called CAST partial dentures and are much better and expensive.
These particular partials replace some upper teeth. The metal you see will fit across part of the palate.
When a person has had all of their teeth removed we must make complete dentures for the person to wear. Dentures are an acceptable solution, but no match for our real teeth! Hence we always try to save natural teeth. When the teeth are removed we are left with a ridge of bone on the upper and lower parts of our mouth, that we can use to put false teeth on. The lower denture always takes a little more work for most patients to get used to for two reasons: lack of height of bone and presence of the tongue. The tongue increases in size in an edentulous mouth and it resists any new encumbrance to its unchallenged domain. In the upper ridge however there are no such interferences.
Root Canal Therapy
Infected or sick tooth due to decay or injury
Chronic tooth pain from contact with hot and cold liquids
Pain from pressure or biting down
Danger of infection spreading
THE SOLUTION: Inside each tooth is a pulp chamber that contains the nerves and blood supply for the tooth. When the pulp becomes infected due to decay or injury to the tooth, the pulp must be removed from the center of the tooth and the canals of each root. Once the infected pulp is removed, the remaining chamber is filled with a rubber-based material to seal it off.
All teeth that have had root canal therapy must be protected with a tooth-like artificial covering known as a crown (see crown section.) This is because teeth that have had the pulp removed are more susceptible to fracture.
ADVANTAGES: Root canal therapy is an excellent way to save a tooth that would otherwise die and need to be removed.
DISADVANTAGES: If a tooth is sick, there are no disadvantages to root canal therapy. On rare occasions, however, root canal therapy may need to be redone to ensure that all of the infection has been removed.
ALTERNATIVES: The only real alternative is to remove the sick tooth. However, this will require a dental implant or bridge to fill the empty space and prevent the shifting of surrounding teeth. These solutions will ultimately cost more than the root canal therapy, and they will never equal the quality of keeping your natural tooth.