As you go further into your life, it seems like there are more and more things that can happen to your teeth which negatively affect your oral health. You have to worry about tooth decay, gum disease, and your teeth aging. While you should always concern yourself with these things, the best treatment for them is to prevent them from happening by following normal oral hygiene practices. Dental trauma, on the other hand, is something that you can rarely prevent through normal dental hygiene techniques. When trauma happens, you’ll need to get it treated immediately.
Unfortunately, dental trauma can have lasting consequences on the form and functionality of your teeth, especially if you don’t get it treated as soon as possible. Some common dental traumas include things such as damage to your teeth and tooth loss. While a lot of this sounds serious, you can take comfort in the fact that most dental trauma is treatable. Recovering from dental trauma is fast when you see your dentist to treat you.
Damaged teeth still work most of the time, but they often don’t work well. A variety of situations can result in damage to your teeth, and you may think that you can go a while without seeing a dentist to fix the problem. However, damaged teeth are weaker and will eventually fail completely if left alone long enough. It’s better to get a damaged tooth fixed at the beginning than wait until it needs replacement, which is the more expensive process.
A damaged tooth can be fixed in a variety of ways, including these procedures:
- Veneers – Dental veneers are typically made from porcelain or composite resin. These thin sheets of tooth-colored material are placed over the surface of the damaged tooth in order to change its appearance. Veneers are used in situations where a tooth has been chipped. During the procedure, your dentist will buff the surface of the affected tooth, effectively removing around half a millimeter of tooth in order to compensate for the added thickness of the veneer. After this, the veneer is bonded to the tooth.
- Crowns – Dental crowns is a cap placed over a tooth that has been damaged or worn down in order to restore proper shape and function. Crowns cover the entirety of the exposed surfaces of the tooth. They are made from a variety of materials. The entire procedure can take place over several different appointments. During the first appointment, your dentist will take X-rays and file down the surfaces of the teeth to make room for the crown. On your second visit, the crown will be affixed to the tooth.
- Fillings – Cavities can damage teeth, as well, which is why it’s important to make regular visits to your dentist. Fillings are routine procedures, where your dentist drills your tooth and fills it with a composite resin or other materials like gold or porcelain.
If you don’t have teeth, you won’t have normal function in your mouth. Unfortunately, there are other consequences that come about from not getting treated for losing your teeth. Your jawbone and structure of your other teeth both depend on having all teeth present to stay in proper shape. If you’ve lost a tooth, your jawbone will start to decay and your other teeth will move to fill the hole.
Lost teeth can be treated in ways such as these:
- Implants – Dental implants are one of the most common dental treatments, but can often be one of the longest treatments, as well. The implant is made up of a titanium rod that is placed in your jawbone to simulate roots of teeth. Once the implant is in place, and the jawbone has healed, your dentist will affix a fake tooth to it. This can take several months, depending on how quick your jawbone heals.
- Dentures – Dentures are also quite common in situations where most or all of the teeth in your mouth are missing. Without teeth, you won’t be able to chew or speak properly, which is why it’s so important to get a restorative treatment like dentures.
See Your Dentist
In the end, it’s the most important thing to see your dentist after you experience any kind of dental trauma. He or she will be able to determine the best treatment to suit your situation and you can stop worrying about recovering from dental trauma.