Dental health is important as ever: with one in four Americans suffering from tooth decay, now may be the time to think about booking your next appointment.
Poor dental hygiene can lead to unnecessary – and painful – health problems. Whether you need a routine filling or simply want to improve your smile, there are many dental procedures available today.
From restorative treatments to hygiene plans, our helpful guide explains some of the most common dental procedures of 2021.
Read on to find out more about the treatments offered by your local dentist.
Dental fillings are an extremely common dental procedure: the average American patient has three dental fillings.
When a patient complains of toothache, the dentist will first perform an X-ray to identify any cracks, fractures, or cavities.
Minor tooth decay can be fixed with a filling under a local anesthetic. The dentist will use a tungsten drill to remove decaying matter from the tooth, then sterilize and fill the gap with porcelain, resin, silver, or gold.
For more advanced decay, root canals offer a restorative alternative to extraction.
The procedure is similar to a filling. However, because the decay is more extensive, the dentist will drill deeper into the tooth and remove any infected soft tissues (also called pulp) at the root of the tooth.
The resultant cavity is then rinsed and sterilized before being filled with an inert material, saving the tooth from further decay.
In some cases, the tooth will be too damaged or decayed to save.
After an assessment, your dentist will determine whether extraction is the best solution for you.
The procedure is performed under a local anesthetic. Using a pair of dental pliers, they will pull the tooth out and dispose of it.
Troublesome or painful wisdom teeth are sometimes extracted by minor oral surgery.
Following an extraction, you may require a dental implant.
Over the course of a few minor surgical procedures, the dentist will implant an artificial tooth into the patient’s jawbone. Dental implants work exactly like a natural tooth, allowing you to bite and chew without pain or difficulty.
Dental implants are a permanent solution. A well-maintained dental implant can last a lifetime.
Tooth discoloration is a common problem that is easily solved by whitening.
Whitening is a cosmetic dentistry procedure that uses a chemical agent to bleach the teeth, resulting in a more aesthetic smile.
This type of dental work is carried out over several visits; the entire process can take a couple of months.
Common Dental Procedures Explained
So, that’s the 101 on common dental procedures in 2021.
With modern anesthetics and techniques, a trip to the dentist is a simple and painless experience, so don’t hesitate to pay your dentist a visit when needed.
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