Prosthodontics may sound like a very foreign word and reality, to many of you. It is the special branch in dentistry, whose primary assignment is to replace and restore teeth that are lost or damaged. Professionals in this area are called prosthodontists. They are the smile architects. They earn this name because they are very highly trained to give you a naturally beautiful smile, which is also very functional and efficient.
From their years of training, they know just what to do to ensure that you get your gorgeous smile. They not only deal with your teeth, but are also interested in your facial features, gums, and lips. When there is a full makeover being undertaken, the team of professionals carrying it out is most times headed by a prosthodontist.
For you to be able to take up this role completely, you need to have some qualifications. Four years in dentistry school and training for a graduate program that has been accredited by the relevant bodies will do just that. When you combine countless hours of experience at work and specialization; you will be able to undertake complex restorations as well as simple ones.
This area of dentistry consists of various procedures which are concerned with the replacement of your natural teeth. This is done through the use of biocompatible substitutes, to either partially or entirely replace your teeth. Here are various treatments that are dealt with.
1. Porcelain Veneers
They are shells which are thin and made from ceramic material. They are used to cover the front areas of your teeth. They are bonded onto your teeth. For this to happen, a small part of your enamel is removed. This ensures that your teeth don’t appear bulky. This treatment lasts for a long time. However, porcelain veneers may alter the color, size, and shape of your teeth, including closing up gaps in between them.
They are artificial covers that are also known as ‘caps.’ Caps are used to replace the part of the tooth that is visible full. Crowns are put into teeth that have already been prepared, and whose roots are intact. They are made from metal, porcelain which has already been fused into metal or porcelain that is pure. Many times, they are used in repairing broken, fractured, or misshapen teeth. At times, they are used after a root canal procedure has been carried out.
3. Dental Implants
These are required in cases whereby a whole tooth needs replacement. They are made from titanium, which has been molded into a metal post which is then implanted in the jaw. This is done through minor surgery. The post becomes fused into the jawbone, therefore, forming steady support for your crown. They are used to replace one or more teeth. They may be used to support other treatments such as dentures. Because of the differences in material, the dental implant cost may vary.
4. Fixed Bridges
This method, utilizes the healthy teeth present in your mouth, on both sides of an existing gap. This is done so that the healthy ones can support the artificial teeth or tooth, being put into the gap. Crowns that have been linked together to form one continuous unit are in turn attached to these abutment teeth. They support the crowns for those that are missing in between. These will require you to pay keen attention when cleaning your teeth, to ensure that the already healthy ones are not also compromised.
These are available in so many different varieties. The types include partial, full, and the implants supported ones. They may act to improve your teeth’s aesthetics and functioning if you have missing ones. This is especially so if you get yourself ones that possess a high quality of craft and that are well-fitted. You may find them a bit uncomfortable as you start using them, but you will eventually get used to them.
These specialists are given the task of formulating the designs and details of dental restoration or replacement, to the finest detail. They are also expected to ensure that if you are undergoing any restoration procedure, it goes well. This field of dentistry plays a huge role in making sure that any smile restoration procedure is successful. This is regardless of it being done for aesthetic or medical reasons.
Image credit: Prosthodontics via Dmitry Kalinovsky/Shutterstock