Restorative Dentistry

restorative_page

extractions

You and Dr. Law may determine that you need a tooth extraction for any number of reasons. Some teeth are extracted because they are severely decayed. Others may have advanced periodontal disease (bone or other supporting tissue loss) or are broken in a way that cannot be repaired. Other teeth may need removal because they are poorly positioned in the mouth (such as impacted teeth) or in preparation for orthodontic treatment.The removal of a single tooth can lead to problems related to your chewing ability, issues with your jaw joint and shifting teeth, which can have a major impact on your dental health. To avoid these complications, Dr. Law will discuss alternatives to extractions as well as replacement of the extracted tooth.

implant dentistry

Dental implants are used to replace missing teeth, creating natural-looking restorations that can be treated like regular teeth. The dental implant process involves placing a titanium cylinder in the jawbone which provides support for an “abutment” or artificial tooth. A crown is then placed on top of the artificial tooth. Patients must meet specific criteria for this procedure to be successful.

dentures and partials

A partial or a complete denture is an appliance that is inserted in the mouth to replace natural teeth and provide support for the cheeks and lips. Most dentures are made of acrylic and can be fabricated in the following ways:

  •  A conventional denture is made after all teeth have been extracted and the tissues (gums) have healed.
  •  An immediate denture is fabricated and inserted immediately after the teeth are extracted, and the tissues are allowed to heal under the denture. However, this denture will have to be re-made or re-based after several months to account for healing after the extractions.
  •  An upper denture, usually acrylic and flesh-colored, covers the palate (roof of the mouth).
  •  A lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to leave room for the tongue.

The teeth in a denture are made of plastic, porcelain or a combination of both. They can be fabricated to fit over endodontically-treated teeth, and a complete denture can be attached to dental implants to allow for a more secure fit of the appliance. Over time, dentures will wear and need to be replaced or adjusted to keep the jaw alignment normal. The alignment will slowly change as the bone and gum ridges recede or shrink due to the extraction of the teeth. Regular dental examinations are important for the denture wearer so that the oral tissues can be checked for disease or change.

root canal therapy

Root canal therapy is a process where Dr. Law treats the inner aspects of a tooth, specifically the area inside a tooth that is occupied by its “pulp tissue.” While a tooth’s pulp tissue contains nerve fibers, it is also composed of arteries, veins, lymph vessels and connective tissue. Root canal therapy is a process where the inner part of the tooth is thoroughly cleaned and filled with a special material to preserve the tooth.

inlays and onlays

Porcelain inlays and onlays are used when decay is too large for a filling but not large enough to justify a crown. Dr. Law removes the defective tooth structure and replaces it with a natural ceramic material which he custom-designs for each tooth. This material is bonded into place with composite cement, rendering it virtually invisible. Dr. Law then restores the teeth to be as close as possible to their original strength with a material that is more wear-resistant, durable and natural-looking than a direct, tooth-colored filling.

crowns and bridges

Porcelain crowns are stationary tooth replacements that cover the entire observable tooth and are bonded to the underlining tooth. They are durable and reflect light in a very similar way to natural teeth. Porcelain is also fused to metal crowns and bridges in procedures that are generally limited to teeth in the back of the mouth. These long-lasting restorations are designed so that the metal is not visible at the gum line, eliminating any “black lines” by covering the entire observable portion of the tooth. Dr. Law and his ceramist achieve beautiful, natural-looking tooth restorations that are extremely strong and have a low fracture rate.

Testimonials

"Dr. Muriel meticulous dentistry created an unbelievable smile. I love my new smile!"
Janice, Knoxville, TN