Restorative Dentistry in North Mankato
If you have ever visited the dentist due to disrupted chewing abilities or debilitating tooth pain, then you understand firsthand how restorative dentistry can rejuvenate your oral health, dental function, and overall smile. At North Mankato Family Dentistry, Dr. Keith Flack and Dr. Angela Schuck provide restorative dental solutions to correct damage, replace lost teeth, and restore strong foundations of oral health.
Our Nicollet County dental team offers proven methods with advanced technology and prime materials to treat all your needs, helping to maintain healthy and fully-functional smiles for years. Drs. Flack and Shuck have rejuvenated countless smiles across Mankato, North Mankato, and St. Peter communities. Contact our office today to schedule your appointment!
CALL US: (507) 625-2273 REQUEST APPOINTMENT
Do Teeth Need to Be Repaired?
Even though your teeth are strong, they can still chip, crack, or decay over time – especially with being in such constant use. When a tooth is damaged, addressing it with professional restorative care should be your first priority. It is important to understand that, no matter how minor the problem may seem, any chip, crack, or fracture to your enamel can develop into larger amounts of damage if left to progress. These issues can not only disrupt the balance of force needed for proper biting and chewing, but they can allow bacteria to enter the inner nerves and soft tissues of your teeth.
With dental restoration treatment, teeth can be returned to full strength, function, and aesthetics. Repairing a tooth early on also increases the chance of keeping your natural tooth, significantly lessening your need for possible extraction.
Our Available Treatments for Dental Restoration
Our North Mankato dentists provide the following treatments and procedures for dental restoration:
Our team loves seeing individuals and families for routine dentistry. However, we also understand that the thought of needing dental care can be intimating, especially if you’ve experienced an accident or trauma to the mouth which might require more complex treatment. This is why we offer all forms of dental sedation, including nitrous oxide, oral conscious, and computerized numbing options. Being highly-experienced and board-certified in conscious sedation allows our dentists to alleviate anxiety and maximize your comfort throughout treatment.
Determining Your Restoration Needs with Comprehensive Examinations
Sometimes, the restoration needs of our patients aren’t as obvious as a significant crack or fracture in the enamel. Advanced technologies make it easier for our dentists to detect small problems before they develop into serious concerns.
Our DIAGNOdent™ technology makes it possible for us to locate small areas of weaknesses in surface enamel before cavities can compromise your teeth. Our digital x-rays, which are more detailed and easier to use than traditional imaging, can also catch issues before they start while also decreasing your exposure to radiation.
We also use hand-held, intraoral cameras for detecting what is going onside inside your smile in real-time. These cameras not only provide us with clear and precise views of your teeth and gums, but they also make for a great way to show you what’s going on as well, helping to educate you along the way.
Why Replace Missing Teeth?
When one tooth is lost, it can affect everything from neighboring teeth and your oral health to facial features and digestion. Lost teeth also mean missing tooth roots. Tooth roots are responsible for supplying essential stimulation that your jawbone needs to remain healthy, functional, and strong. The longer teeth go unreplaced, the weaker your jawbone will become, due to the lack of stimulation.
As the bone in your jaw begins to weaken, the structures of your face are also affected. Facial features begin to shift and sag, resulting in a prematurely aged appearance. Healthy, surrounding teeth also begin to shift towards the open space where a missing tooth once was, which can impact your chewing, speaking, and smiling abilities.
While these symptoms won’t happen right away, they often can and will begin the longer a tooth goes unreplaced. For your long-term oral health and overall well-being, missing teeth should be replaced.
Luckily, there are many treatments available for tooth replacement, none so as effective as with dental implants.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants consist of body-safe titanium posts that are surgically inserted into the jawbone. After strategic placement by our dentists, bone, and tissue fuses around the implant, creating a long-lasting, durable, and permanent bond.
Traditionally, dental implants are manufactured using titanium. Our dentists, however, also offer ceramic implants that allow for the same strength as titanium but offer a more holistic approach to your tooth replacement treatment.
Why Consider Replacing Missing Teeth with Dental Implants?
Because implants fuse permanently with living tissue and bone, their bonding process makes them a permanent part of your jaw. This, in turn, provides a highly-successful, secure, and lasting foundation for replacing any number of missing teeth.
Dental implants can:
- Maintain and restore strength to your jawbone
- Protect and preserve neighboring, healthy teeth
- Restore abilities for you to chew, bite, and digest food properly
- Help you speak and smile confidently and comfortably
- Allow you to enjoy renewed aesthetics
Dental implants are designed to last a lifetime and often can with proper dental care and oral hygiene.
How Many Teeth Can Dental Implants Replace?
While dental implants replace missing tooth roots, they can replace the entire structures of missing teeth when lifelike restorations are attached. At North Mankato Family Dentistry, Drs. Flack and Schuck replace lost teeth with the following implant-supported prosthetics:
Crowns are an ideal restoration for restoring a single missing tooth lost in a smile. When attached to one dental implant, these prosthetics can help restore a missing tooth entirely, from root to crown.
Fixed bridges can replace one to several missing teeth when attached to two dental implants — bridges literally “bridge” the gap created by several missing teeth in a row.
With the use of our CEREC milling machine, we can create customized crowns and fixed bridges in our in-house dental lab that are designed for the exact dimensions of your smile. Our state-of-the-art technology is the ideal solution for complete dental health as efficiently as possible.
Complete & Partial dentures are often used to replace multiple or up to an entire smile of missing teeth. Our denture appliances can be affixed to four, six, or eight dental implants as the base. To help better ensure the lasting stabilization of your dentures, we also offer dental implants that are narrower in shape.
The Dental Implant Process Explained in 3 Steps
Dental implants can be a perfect solution to tooth loss for many healthy adults and seniors. That said, a full oral health examination, including digital x-rays, should be performed. If there are active dental health concerns such as gum disease or severe decay, these issues will need to be treated first.
Another important aspect of treatment is the health of the patient’s jawbone. Jawbone density and jaw structure differ from person to person. There must be enough bone to successfully anchor an implant. In cases where your bone density may be determined weak, our dentists can perform a bone graft or sinus lift procedure to add bone material to the area in need of implant treatment.
After the examination and any necessary treatment, the implant(s) are strategically placed in your jaw using absolute skill and precision. This surgical procedure can take anywhere from about an hour to more than three, depending on your needs.
Healing time after your implant surgery varies. Although it’s not typical to have any symptoms after the first few weeks, it’s crucial to wait for your bone and tissues to heal completely. This can take anywhere from six to eight months.
Once healing is complete, any temporary restorations will be replaced with your final crown, bridges, or denture. Your chosen restoration will be anchored to one or up to eight dental implants, which will prevent slipping and eliminating the need for adhesives.
A follow-up appointment will be necessary to ensure everything is working as expected. Afterward, you can return to your regular dental hygiene and dental appointment schedule. Our dentists will let you know if and when any of the restoration work needs maintenance. For most patients, brushing and flossing regularly remain the most valuable steps.
What are Bone Grafts & Sinus Lifts?
Bone Grafts can be performed before dental implant surgery to strengthen the patient’s jawbone. This improves healing, allowing the implant to integrate fully into the jaw. It also supports a safe and secure fit between the implant screw and any artificial teeth.
Sinus Lifts are another remedy for when the patient’s bone structure is not conducive to dental implant surgery. It is used when there is insufficient bone height in the upper jaw. It also helps if the sinuses are too close to the upper jaw.
Do You Provide Restoration Treatments that are also Preventive?
Absolutely! There’s a whole world of restorative dental treatments that work to protect and preserve your oral health besides dental implants. While proper preventative dentistry requires you to visit our office twice a year, a dental injury, infection, or debilitating pain need to be addressed quickly as treatment for these concerns is essential.
When dental damage of any kind results in deep discoloration of a tooth, inflamed gums, or dental sensitivity and discomfort, it can mean the health and integrity of your tooth is in jeopardy. For helping to preserve oral health when teeth are unsalvageable and teeth that can be saved, we provide tooth extractions and root canal therapy. We also offer orthodontic treatment with Invisalign® clear braces to align teeth and jaws for helping prevent the need for more complicated procedures in the future.
Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are back teeth some individuals get between the ages of 17 and 25. Because most smiles to do not have the room to house these extra teeth, they often cause complications and require extraction.
It might be necessary to extract other teeth for a range of reasons, such as advanced decay or trauma. Whenever possible, teeth should be restored rather than extracted. In some cases, however, extraction is the safest solution for oral health and overall well-being.
Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy is often necessary when an infection reaches the inner nerves, tissues, and blood vessels of your tooth. Also known as the pulp, this tissue is responsible for supplying blood flow. During a root canal, infection is stopped by removing the pulp, then cleaning the interior, and sealing it with an inert material.
Performed promptly, a root canal can help preserve a severely infected tooth and restore it so it won’t need to be extracted. Waiting too long for a root canal can encourage infection in the surrounding soft tissue. An abscess may develop and cause the infection to spread.
What if My Teeth are Healthy but Need a Little Help?
Teeth that are otherwise healthy with minor to moderate chips, cracks, and other forms of enamel damage can be treated with the following restoration treatments:
White, composite fillings are made from beautiful, lifelike composite materials. They not only help to repair small chips, cracks, and seal spaces left from removed decay, they also blend easily with surrounding enamel.
CEREC same-day crowns work by encasing teeth that are severely damaged or decayed, helping to restore strength, aesthetics, and renew function. CEREC crowns are milled right at our office in our in-house dental lab, after taking a series of digital x-rays and impressions of your tooth. This means you will never have to get a temporary crown or wait two weeks to receive your new, customized crown.
Inlays & Onlays
Porcelain inlays and onlays are aesthetic restorations fabricated outside the smile to treating different types of decay. Inlays fit inside the cusp of the tooth, and onlays are designed to restore both the inside of the tooth and one or more of the projecting cusps. After decay is removed, we take impressions of your tooth and design these prosthetics to provide a perfect match to the tooth structure that has been removed.
Restore Your Smile Today!
To find out about dental treatments and get personalized advice, contact North Mankato Family Dentistry today. Our expert team is waiting to help you reach complete dental health and get the beautiful smile you deserve.
CALL US: (507) 625-2273 REQUEST APPOINTMENT