Trips to the dentist can be overwhelming especially if there has been a long span of time between appointments. Having a little knowledge about the most common adult treatments may be helpful and alleviate any anxiety prior to the appointment. Here are the most common adult treatment procedures along with a brief explanation:
- Fillings and Repair. Tooth decay is one of the most common problems with adults. When teeth are compromised by tooth decay, dentists must repair them with a composite resin to fill in the area that is removed. The same resin is also used to repair chipped or broken teeth as a result of trauma or using teeth to open things, and even teeth grinding. Once complete, teeth look and feel natural.
- Crowns. Dentists use crowns to protect damaged teeth whether broken, cracked or even dead (root). Crowns, also called caps, are usually made of porcelain, metal or a combination of materials and placed over the entire tooth above the gum. In addition to covering a damaged tooth, crowns are often mounted on abutment teeth that anchor dental bridges.
- Implants. Dental implants are small posts made from titanium that are anchored into the bone structure under the gums with a portion sticking out of the gum. They are used to hold dentures and bridges in place as well as hold crowns when a tooth has been pulled or has fallen out. The implants fuse with the bones to permanently stay in place.
- Bridges. Bridges are devices with artificial teeth that replace missing teeth. They are mounted in the mouth and affixed to adjacent natural teeth. Bridges can either be fixed (permanently placed in the targeted area of the mouth) or removable, which is exactly as the name implies.
- Extractions. Extractions are the removal of teeth from the socket. Most extractions happen as a result of poor oral hygiene that results in severe tooth decay or from trauma to the mouth. Extractions are the last option when trying repair teeth.
Good oral hygiene is the secret to preventing adults from having many of these treatments as most are the result of not caring for your teeth and gums.