What exactly is restorative dental care, and why is it important for your child's oral health? In this post, our Calgary dentists explain the different types of restorative dental services and how they can help restore a smile.
What is restorative dental care?
Put simply, restorative dental care is any dental treatment that restores the structure, integrity, and/or function of a damaged tooth or teeth. This damage can range from decay to injury (chipping and other external trauma, for example). The goal of restorative dental treatment is to bring the tooth or teeth back to their normal function.
Even children can benefit from restorative treatment. In fact, with most dental issues, the early they are treated the better the long-term outcome will be.
Why is restorative dental care important?
There are many reasons restorative dental care is important including:
- Improving self-confidence
- Preventing other teeth from shifting out of place
- Prevening further tooth decay
- Helping prevent excess plaque build-up
- Making chewing and speaking easier
What happens during treatment?
Before treatment even begins, it's likely your dentist will diagnose your child's condition using a variety of means, including X-rays and a thorough examination of their mouth.
Treatment will vary based on your child's individual needs. Sometimes the treatment will only require a single dental appointment. Other times, when the damage is much more extensive and thus requires a more complex procedure, treatment will likely require multiple visits. If necessary, your dentist will refer your child to the appropriate specialist if they require a specialized procedure or treatment.
Your dentist will discuss with you the appropriate pain medication and/or sedation options for your child to ensure their comfort while the dental work is performed.
Types of Restorations
Most dental restoration procedures are classified as either direct or indirect. Direct procedures usually involve repairs done inside the mouth. Indirect procedures are done outside the mouth and then attached to the tooth or the tooth structure.
Another word for this common procedure is 'fillings.' With direct restoration, the dentist usually places a mouldable substance inside of a cleaned tooth cavity. This material will harden and restore the tooth's structure. Common materials used for fillings include silver amalgam, composite fillings, and glass ionomer fillings.
With indirect restorations, construction happens outside the mouth. There is usually much more work involved with indirect restorations, but the results are usually more stable and long-lasting. An example of an indirect restoration we perform at Kids R Us Dentistry is a dental crown.