Restorative dentistry is used when tooth structure needs to be replaced due to decay or a breakage in the tooth. Depending on how much healthy tooth structure is remaining, an appropriate restoration is chosen to provide the tooth the strength and protection it needs to remain healthy.
The two main technical concerns when selecting the appropriate restoration are it’s ability to seal out the oral fluids, and it’s ability to provide strength to the tooth. Depending on the situation, there are a number of restorative options and materials that are at our disposal.
Gold is the strongest, most bio-compatible restorative material available to dentists. They produce the fewest problems with the bite, and last the longest. The only problem with gold is…its color is not close to that of a natural tooth!
Esthetics are also a very important part of restorative dentistry, just as in cosmetic dentistry. Porcelain is a highly esthetic restorative material having the ability to look exactly like the enamel of a tooth. Porcelain is a great alternative to patients seeking an esthetic alternative to a gold restoration. Porcelain restorations are not as good as gold in the strength and longevity department, but to most patients that’s a small price to pay to have nearly invisible dental work.