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Solutions for reclaiming your smile after damage or deterioration.

If you have missing teeth, you’re not alone. Approximately 178 million Americans are missing at least one tooth. The most common cause of tooth loss is untreated tooth decay, followed by gum disease and physical trauma. Missing teeth can not only affect your bite alignment, change the way you speak, and interfere with how you eat, but they can also cause your self-confidence to take a dive.

Thankfully, modern cosmetic and restorative dentistry techniques make it possible to recover from severe tooth damage or tooth loss and come out with a stunning smile—maybe even one you love more than your original one.

We’re going to go over 5 of the main ways your dentist can help you remake your smile after experiencing damage or tooth loss. Depending on your situation, your dentist may use one technique or even a combination of multiple techniques to help you reach your smile goals.

1. Porcelain Veneers

What it Is

Porcelain veneers are one of the most popular forms of cosmetic dentistry and the go-to for total smile makeovers. However, porcelain veneers aren’t just about making teeth look aesthetically beautiful—they can address issues with severe tooth damage and tooth loss.
How it Works
Getting porcelain veneers involves placing thin strips of porcelain over the surface of the tooth to replicate the look of a natural tooth. Your dentist will prep your natural teeth by removing a small amount of enamel to make space for the porcelain overlay. Your porcelain veneers can last upwards of 20 years when properly cared for, making them a fantastic investment for suitable candidates.

Who it’s for

Porcelain veneers are ideal for most individuals who have experienced minor to severe tooth damage and/or tooth loss. If you currently have untreated tooth decay or gum disease you will need to get these problems treated before you can get porcelain veneers.

2. Dental Resin Bonding

What it Is

Dental bonding is an alternative to porcelain veneers for fixing minor damage and can be combined with other restorative services. Dental bonding utilizes a resin material and involves a much less invasive procedure compared to veneers.
How it Works
Dental bonding is similar to veneers in the sense that your dentist will place new material over the surface of your teeth—in this case, a dental resin. Your dentist won’t need to remove any enamel to do this and you likely won’t even need any anesthetic. Dental bonding doesn’t last as long as veneers but it will last for a number of years before needing to be touched up.
Who it’s for
Dental bonding is for individuals who have minor tooth damage and don’t want to get full porcelain veneers. It’s also useful for individuals who are already getting a crown or implant but would also like to boost their smile by covering up small chips, gaps, and discoloration.

3. Porcelain or Metal Crowns

What it Is

Porcelain or metal crowns are ideal for the treatment of teeth on an individual basis and essentially are a cap placed over an existing tooth. Millennium Dental offers natural porcelain crowns to match the rest of your teeth or metal crowns (gold or silver) if you prefer.

How it Works

Crowns are placed over badly decayed teeth after the decay has weakened the tooth structure. Once your dentist has removed all the tooth decay, usually after extensive cavity treatment or root canal therapy, they will take an impression of your tooth and a lab will create your crown custom-designed to fit. While you wait for the lab to make your crown, you’ll wear a temporary crown so no further damage occurs to the tooth.

Who it’s for

Crowns are ideal for individuals who only have one damaged tooth or multiple damaged teeth that they want treated on an individual basis. Crowns do require a stable tooth structure to be placed on, so if you have extremely damaged teeth, crowns may not be a possible solution.

4. Porcelain or PFM Bridges

What it Is

Dental bridges are a time-honored way of replacing missing teeth after the loss of one or multiple consecutive teeth. As the name suggests, bridges “bridge” the gap between missing teeth. Millennium Dental offers porcelain, metal, and PFM (porcelain-fused-to-metal) bridges, with porcelain and PFM bridges being the most natural in appearance.

How it Works

Bridges are used in combination with crowns for a complete treatment. The crowns will be placed on the anchor teeth adjacent to the gap while the bridge itself is fused between them. The result will look extremely realistic. You will be able to chew on the bridge, but most dentists will advise you to steer clear from very hard foods.

Who it’s for

Bridges are ideal for individuals who have lost one or more teeth, especially if there are multiple missing teeth in a row. Bridges are also a great solution for individuals who are looking for a more affordable fix than dental implants.

5. Implants and Implant-Supported Dentures

What it Is

Dental implants are a permanent solution for tooth loss, whether it’s one tooth or multiple teeth. Modern dental implants and implant-supported dentures are extremely comfortable, natural in appearance, and can easily last a lifetime with proper care. Best of all, caring for them is just like caring for your natural teeth.

How it Works

Dental implant placement involves inserting a titanium post in the jawbone, in the location of the now-missing tooth. During the healing period, your jawbone will grow around this post and form a foundation just as solid as a normal tooth. From there your dentist can attach a fake tooth, multiple teeth, or implant-supported dentures.

Who it’s for

Dental implants are ideal for individuals who want a permanent solution for their missing teeth and don’t mind waiting for the healing period it takes to get it. Dental implants may be more invasive to place, but the end result is actually about as natural as you can get, as the posts prevent future bone loss in the jaw and face from occurring.

Regain confidence in your smile with the help of Millennium Dental

Our goal at Millennium Dental is to help our patients get their best smile yet. Dr. Harrison and our dental team offer comprehensive dental care, from routine cleanings to the cosmetic and restorative procedures mentioned above.
When you’re ready to schedule your appointment with Dr. Harrison, you can give us a call or fill out our online Make Your Appointment form.