Composite resin (white fillings) – Composite fillings are a mixture of glass or quartz filler in a resin matrix that produces a tooth-colored filling. Composite fillings provide good durability and resistance to fracture in small-to-mid size restorations that need to withstand moderate chewing pressure. Less tooth structure is removed when the dentist prepares the tooth as compared to amalgam (silver) fillings because the resin is chemically bonded to the tooth with adhesion dentistry. This results in a smaller filling than that of an amalgam
Dental inlays and onlys are indirect lab processed restorations used to repair back teeth that have a small to moderate size cavity. They are usually made of porcelain, resin and sometimes gold. They are securely bonded to the tooth surface thereby adding structural integrity and preventing bacteria from entering and forming cavities. Inlay/onlay placement is usually carried out over 2 appointments. An inlay lies within the confines of the cusps, they are more conservative than onlays or crowns because less tooth structure is removed in preparing the restoration. Onlays are used to treat decay that extends to one or more of the cusps and help patients avoid the eventual need for more extensive treatment with dental crowns, dental bridges or dental implants. Onlays cover, protect and reinforce one or more cusps of the tooth.
Dental crowns or “dental caps” are a type of dental restoration which, when cemented into place, fully cover the portion of a tooth that sits above the gum line. Since dental crowns encase the entire visible aspect of a tooth, a dental crown in effect becomes the tooth's new outer surface. A crown may be needed to restore a tooth to its original shape, strengthen a tooth, improve the cosmetic appearance, protect a weak tooth from fracturing or to hold together parts of a cracked tooth (essentially preventing the cracks from spreading further), support large fillings, hold a dental bridge in place, restore fractured teeth, cover badly shaped or discolored teeth and cover a dental implant. Teeth to be crowned are prepared by a dentist, impressions are taken and a dental lab technician fabricates the crown. Crowns may be made of gold or other similar metals, porcelain, or a combination of the two. Crown placement is usually carried out over two appointments.
A bridge is a dental restoration used to replace a missing tooth by permanently joining two adjacent teeth or dental implants. Dental bridges literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. The teeth on either side of the missing tooth or teeth are reduced in size. These teeth which support the bridge are called abutments. The part of the bridge which replaces a missing tooth and attaches to the abutments is known as a "pontic." . A bridge is made up of two crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap and a false tooth/teeth in between. For multiple missing teeth, some cases may have several pontics. A bridge may also refer to numerous single-unit crowns fused together. Dental bridges can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials. Fixed bridges are more expensive than removable appliances but are more stable.
Dentures replace missing teeth. They are supported by surrounding soft and hard tissues of the oral cavity. Conventional dentures are removable, however there are many different denture designs, some of which clasp onto teeth or dental implants. There are two main categories of dentures, depending on whether they are used to replace missing teeth on the lower arch or upper arch. Removable partial dentures are for patients who are missing some of their teeth on a particular arch. Conversely, complete dentures are full dentures and are worn by patients who are missing all of the teeth in a single arch (i.e. the maxillary (upper) or mandibular (lower) arch).