No two people are the same so we treat every esthetic case differently and try to create a treatment that best reflects the individual person. Listed below are the different procedures and options we have to create a beautiful smile in most cases. We are doing a combination of treatments.
ESTHETIC POSTERIOR OPTIONS
For posterior teeth we mostly use porcelain and composite.
Which procedure we use to restore a tooth is directly related to how much of the natural tooth remains after removing the decay and old filling. If at all possible we try and use a direct filling. It's the easiest, most economical way to restore teeth, but there must be sufficient remaining natural tooth structure for it to hold up long term. If not then we use inlays, onlays, and crowns.
When restoring a tooth our primary focus is to keep as much of the natural tooth as possible.
This will be determined by the extent of the decay and the presence of a previous restoration. Most options will involve bonded tooth colored restorations. There are many advantages to this type of dental care. First, it's the strongest choice, since we create a very strong bond directly to the enamel of the tooth.
This also allows for a longer lasting restoration as well. Next, it's the most conservative choice, since we only remove the unhealthy part of the tooth. No tooth structure is removed for retention as with metal work. Last, but not least, it's the most esthetic.
We can restore teeth with these procedures that look just like natural teeth.
Occasionally we have to use gold, but not often and only on the most posterior molars.
There is no reason to ever consider silver-mercury fillings. They are inferior to porcelain and composite in every way possible, although the majority of dentists still place them and the ADA still approves of it. We stopped using dental amalgam fillings in 1995.