When teeth are damaged or decayed, restorative dentistry comes to the rescue. However, as a biological dental practice, we do NOT use mercury amalgam to repair the teeth.
Mercury amalgam “silver” fillings require the dentist to remove far too much healthy, natural tooth structure in order to place the restoration. This weakens the teeth, leaving them more prone to fracture. More, the crude seal between tooth and metal means a greater risk of bacterial contamination and further decay under the filling.
Most importantly, though, the mercury used in dental amalgam is highly toxic both inside and outside the human body.
So instead, we opt for healthier, biocompatible materials when teeth need to be restored or even replaced.
“Tooth Colored” Composite
Composite resin materials can be bonded directly to the remaining enamel structure once the amalgam and any decay has been removed. The two most common materials we use are Ivoclar and VOCO Empress Direct.
Always, we aim to use the most biologically appropriate materials available for stability, longevity, and aesthetics. This means they’re BPA-free and fluoride-free, as well. However, composites do tend to wear down faster than natural tooth enamel or porcelain restorations.
Because of this, they’re typically recommended for small fillings or teeth toward the front of the mouth, which experience less wear from chewing.
There are three kinds of restorations that can be done using ceramic or porcelain: crowns, inlays, and onlays. These restore at least one wall of the tooth, as well as its biting surface. With the CEREC technology we have in our office, we can often place these biocompatible restorations in a single visit.
In fact, you can even watch as the restoration is being designed and milled from a block of EMAX, our preferred material for such restorations!
The crown, inlay, or onlay is then chemically bonded to your tooth, restoring your tooth’s original strength.
Whether we’re placing composite or ceramic, always, we use ozone during and after each procedure to support healing and limit the risk of decay recurring below the restoration.
Replacing Teeth with Biocompatible Dental Implants
By far, implants are the ideal solution – whether for a single tooth, multiple teeth, or even to support a fixed partial.
The implants are surgically placed in your jaw, where they integrate with your natural bone for stability. Crowns or partials are then placed on top, giving the appearance – and function – of natural teeth.
We’ve found that implants made from surgical grade titanium test well for most patients. Metal-free ceramic implants are also now available, although they may not be suitable in all cases.
Once you’ve been evaluated for implants, we can discuss which option might be best for you and develop a treatment plan from there.
What Does It Cost?
Unfortunately, there’s no simple answer to this question. The total treatment cost depends on a number of factors, such as how many teeth are being treated, the type(s) of restoration(s) or implant(s), and the materials being used.
After a thorough oral exam with diagnostic imaging, we will be able to provide you a detailed treatment plan with costs for all recommended procedures.
All are made from surgical grade titanium and most cases test good for patients. There is a porcelain implant (non-metal) that HAS been released in the USA by the FDA. It has restrictions and not applicable for all cases. Please contact our office for more information.
G. Thomas Colpitts, DDS, AIAOMT
2448 E 81st Street, Suite 1600
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74137