Life can be hard, and it’s important to smile often and laugh long. All of us at 7 O’Clock Dental think people should smile and laugh as often as possible.
That can be hard to do when you have missing or worn teeth. Many people hide their smiles out of embarrassment or discomfort.
Worn teeth can be susceptible to decay. The bacteria in your mouth can combine with your saliva to produce a thin, sticky film called plaque. Plaque forms on the gum line around and between teeth. The bacteria produce acids which eats away at tooth enamel. Worn enamel is likely to be less resistant to the acids because it’s thinner.
Decay which reaches the interior of the tooth causes infection, and long-term dental infections have been linked to a number of health conditions like heart and lung problems, and diabetes.
Missing teeth can also impact your health, but in different ways. There’s a tendency to chew on the side with more teeth. This can lead to premature wear on those teeth and to jaw muscle strain that can cause pain.
Teeth that don’t have another tooth opposing them will continue to grow. In time, this can affect your bite and make chewing uncomfortable. Many people with a number of missing teeth tend to limit their diet to foods they can eat comfortably. This can lead to nutritional deficiencies.
The 7 O’Clock Solution
The ideal solution for many people with one or more worn or missing teeth is a dental crown or a dental bridge.
Both crowns and bridges have been used for decades to correct dental problems. They’re durable and appear very natural since they are made to exactly match the color of your existing teeth.
Crowns are what many people refer to as “caps.” The crowns used in our practice are made of very strong and durable porcelain. The crown fits over an existing worn or damaged tooth. Once it’s cemented in place, the crown protects the tooth against decay and further damage while also restoring its functionality.
Another option for restoring a missing tooth is a dental implant. An implant is a very small and very strong metal screw that’s usually made out of a titanium metal. The implant is inserted through the gum and into the bone. Once the bone has firmly fused to the implant, a completely natural-looking crown is placed on the implant which holds it very securely.
Dental implants are the strongest and longest-lasting dental restoration. The implant itself will likely last for your entire life. Since implants don’t make use of any neighboring teeth, there’s no problem with flossing or brushing. That decreases the chance of tooth decay.
Implants are a very attractive option for many people. When it comes to replacing several neighboring teeth, a dental bridge may be the best solution.
A dental bridge “fills the gap” where one or more teeth are missing. Traditional “fixed” bridges are basically three or more crowns created as a single piece of dental work.
The teeth next to the gap (the abutments) receive hollow crowns while one or more solid crowns – replacement teeth, or pontics – fill the gap. With the abutment crowns firmly cemented into place, the bridge is fixed and immovable. It completely restores your ability to eat and beautifies your smile.
Dental bridges are strong and durable. With care, they can last 10 years and up to 15 years in some cases. There is a special flossing technique needed with dental bridges which our staff will be happy to show you. Dental bridges most often fail due to decay in the neighboring teeth. Good oral hygiene is a must to protect your investment and your smile!
Give Yourself Reasons to Smile Again
If you’ve been living with the embarrassment or inconvenience of worn or missing teeth, do yourself a favor. Call our New Orleans, LA office today at (504) 266-0664 to set up a consultation with Dr. Tripp. Or, you can use our convenient online form.
We’ll be happy to arrange a day and time that work with your schedule. In fact, we’re open from 8am until 7pm Monday through Friday for your convenience!
Dr. Tripp will perform an examination and use state-of-the-art technologies to assess the condition of your mouth. He’ll then sit down with you and discuss the best options for your needs.
All of us at 7 O’Clock Dental look forward to the opportunity to help you live life to the fullest again.