Smile Repair for Las Cruces Residents
Our dentists and team work diligently to help patients keep their smiles whole and healthy, but in many cases, even the most thorough oral hygiene plans cannot prevent all dental health issues. When damage or decay occurs, Drs. Natalie and Ramon Ortiz and the dentistry team at Painted Skies Dental Center are here to help with comprehensive restorative dentistry services including same day dental restorations using CEREC®. Contact us right away if you experience dental pain or damage, and we will create a personalized treatment plan to renew your oral health quickly and comfortably.
Dental Crowns & Bridges
Dental crowns are the most frequently recommended restorations, and are a versatile method for repairing even the most severely decayed or damaged teeth. Dental crowns are crafted from a number of materials including gold, porcelain bonded to metal, and all-ceramic. These restorations fit over the top of a damaged tooth completely surrounding the treated tooth and protecting it from further decay or damage. Traditional dental crowns are placed over the course of two appointments. During the initial visit, we prepare the tooth or teeth, and take bite impressions. These impressions are used by our dental lab to craft a custom dental crown. In the meantime, we place a temporary crown to protect the tooth from additional damage until the custom solution is completed. Once we receive the final product, patients return to our office to exchange the temporary for their custom restoration. We’re also happy to offer the same high-quality custom solutions in just one visit using the CEREC® computer assisted design and manufacture system. Dental crowns are frequently recommended as part of the following restorative treatments:
- Repairing a severely decayed, damaged, or cosmetically flawed tooth to perfect and strengthen the smile
- Following root canal therapy to protect and strengthen the treated tooth
- Attached to a dental implant post to replace a single missing tooth
- Two dental crowns can be placed over healthy teeth to anchor one more replacement teeth creating a fixed bridge or crown and bridge prosthetic
Root Canal Therapy
Root canals have a reputation for being extremely painful, but this safe, effective treatment is actually a great solution for preserving a damaged tooth and avoiding extraction. The painful infection leading up to root canal therapy is actually where the procedure’s bad reputation stems from. The inner, pulp, layer of the tooth houses the nerve system. When decay or damage reaches this layer, the resulting toothache can be excruciating. The good news is that root canals dramatically decrease this discomfort right away. The process is fairly straightforward. A small access hole is drilled into the affected tooth, and the infected pulp and nerve are removed. Then, we reseal the treated tooth, and in some cases, we may need to place a dental crown to fully restore strength to the tooth.
Patients with minimal decay or minor chips and cracks in teeth, we may recommend direct bonding. This treatment option allows us to quickly repair damaged or decayed teeth in a single visit preserving the maximum amount of natural dental structure. Using composite resin that is shaded to match the natural coloring of patients’ smiles, the putty-like substance is placed on the damaged tooth and shaped into position directly onto the affected area. Once we have the composite filling shaped into position, we use a curing light to harden the material restoring shape and structure to the tooth. This is an affordable and effective treatment option for damage, decay, or purely cosmetic flaws.
We typically try to preserve patients’ natural dental structure, but there are some cases where tooth extraction is the best option to ensure overall oral health. In the following situations, we may recommend tooth removal in order to keep smiles healthy:
- As part of orthodontic treatment when patients do not have adequate space to accommodate the shifting of teeth into their proper alignment
- In preparation for a full or partial denture, one or more teeth may need to be extracted if they are damaged or will make the denture uncomfortable
- When patients experience severe decay or damage that compromises too much of the dental structure for us to restore
- The third molars, wisdom teeth, are the last to erupt into patients’ smiles and the most frequently extracted as patients often do not have adequate space to accommodate these teeth within their smiles
Dentures & Partials
Patients with extensive tooth loss may want to consider traditional partial or full dentures. Partial dentures, sometimes referred to simply as partials, are used to replace a number of missing teeth (consecutive and nonconsecutive) along an arch. They are composed of a number replacement teeth set into a gum colored base that is shaped to fit into patients’ smiles like a puzzle piece clipping into position connected to surrounding teeth. Full dentures are a complete arch of prosthetic teeth set into a more substantial gum colored base that is held in place through natural suction. We also offer dental implant supported tooth replacement for those patients who are interested in a more stable tooth replacement option.