If a tooth is broken, chipped or weakened by the presence of a large filling, then the strength of the tooth and its longevity might be increased by the use of a crown. A crown is basically like a helmet that fits over the tooth and helps it to withstand the large forces that are placed on it during function and chewing.
A bridge is an artificial structure that is placed over two of your natural teeth to replace a missing tooth in the middle.
For both crowns and bridges, you will need at least two appointments, as we need to prepare your tooth and take impressions of them. Then the impressions are sent off to the lab so that the crown or bridge can be constructed. In the mean time we will put a temporary crown or bridge onto your teeth to protect it. When the crown or bridge is sent back to us from the lab, we can then fit it onto your prepared tooth and bond it on with a cementing agent.
Your gentle Be Pain Free dentist will show you how to best clean your crown or bridge to ensure that you get many years of use from them. Once fitted, the crown or bridge should feel completely comfortable and natural in your mouth and can last for many years to come as long as your mouth is completely healthy and your oral hygiene is adequate.
There are some possible complications that may arise during this procedure including tooth breakage during preparation, infection of the pulp or gums, pain or discomfort, an altered feeling or allergic reactions. However these are unlikely to occur and if we feel you are at high risk of any of these complications we will discuss this with you. There may be some tenderness in the area due to the preparation but this should not last more than a few days. If it does, please let us know so that we can help you. If the size of the tooth has been altered even slightly during the preparation and cementing of your crown or bridge, then the way you bite may change and this may lead to discomfort or pain. If you notice this, please let us know so that we can recheck your bite and adjust it if required.
Dentures can be used to replace missing teeth so that normal chewing, speech and appearance can be maintained. Dentures can be made of either metal or acrylic and there are advantages and disadvantages of both materials. If you are missing teeth and are interested in getting dentures, discuss this with your friendly dentist at Be Pain Free and we will look at your individual situation and recommend the type of denture that will be most suited to your needs.
New dentures will take some time to get used to and can feel tight, uncomfortable or bulky until your mouth adjusts to them. You may also notice that you have an increased amount of saliva in your mouth and may find speaking is different. Getting new dentures are like getting a new pair of shoes and they will take some time to get used to before they will feel completely comfortable.
It will take a minimum of 3-4 visits and at least a month to get a denture made. At Be Pain Free we take our time to make your denture and check it in your mouth at multiple times during the construction process so that we can ensure your dentures are completely comfortable for you.
In some special situation we may recommend that you get an ‘immediate’ denture if you have a planned tooth extraction, especially of a front tooth, but in this situation we will discuss the details with you during the treatment planning stage.
With time all dentures become loose as your gum and bone structure changes. If your dentures are loose or uncomfortable, please do not adjust them at home, and bring them to us instead. In some cases the denture can be adjusted at the chair side while you wait and will only take a few minutes, but in other cases, we may need to take further impressions of your mouth and send your denture back to the lab for adjustment which may take some time.
Dentures need to be cleaned after every meal. We recommend you brush your denture every night with a soft brush and mild denture cleaning solution over a basin of water or a towel (to prevent the denture from being damaged if it falls from your hands during cleaning). Ensure all debris has been cleaned and the denture is completely clean and spotless.
If your denture is chipped, damaged or broken please call us so that we can fix it for you, do not attempt to repair it at home as you may damage it further and make it impossible to repair.
Dental fillings can usually be done in a single visit. The most commonly used material in our clinic for fillings is known as Composite Resin which is colour matched to your tooth. At Be Pain Free Dentistry we do not use metal fillings. Advances in technology has meant that tooth coloured composite resin fillings can be suitable for repairing both front and back teeth. They often require less tooth preparation and drilling than metal fillings. Also, they can help insulate the tooth from temperature changes and discomfort.
There is a chance that some food or drinks may stain composite fillings, and they may wear away and need replacing, especially when used in larger cavities. However, no filling or restoration can be ‘permanent’ and so this is to be expected of all dental restorative work.
Inlays and onlays are often more durable than traditional fillings and can help strengthen the tooth and prevent the need for further dental treatment in the future. Inlays and onlays are used on teeth where there has been a significant loss of tooth structure, but insufficient weakening or structural loss to warrant a crown.
Inlays and onlays need to be make in a laboratory, os if you require one, we will first prepare your tooth, then take an impression to send off. We will send you home with a temporary filling in this area and when the inlay or onlay is ready, we can cement it on to your tooth as we would with a crown.
Root canal therapy is a way of saving your natural tooth that would otherwise need to be extracted due to an infection. Without root treatment, the infection at your teeth may lead to an abscess formation at the tip of the root which will result in constant and often unbearable pain.
Root canal therapy involves removing the infected pulp and nerves from inside the root canals of the tooth. Medication is then placed inside the root system to settle it down. If there is no sign of infection or inflammation when you return for a review appointment after pulp removal, then we can proceed to carefully shape and disinfect each canal in the tooth. Once this step is complete, the tooth is ready for restoration. Firstly a rubbery material will be placed inside the canals with a sealer to prevent further infection from travelling down the canal. This is then heated to shape it to the exact shape of the root canals. Once this is complete the tooth can be restored with either a filling or a crown.
In most situations, we will recommend that it would be ideal to definitively restore the root treated tooth with a crown to maximise the longevity of the treatment and prevent future infections.
Depending on the particular tooth being treated and the complexity of the canal system and the level of infection at the root, root canal therapy will take a minimum of three appointments and can take even more.
With proper care and maintenance, it should be possible for the root treated tooth to last as long as the other natural teeth in your mouth.