Whether you have had a new dental implant to replace a missing tooth, a crown fitted to help re-build a broken tooth, a root canal treatment or veneers fitted to even out damaged or chipped teeth, it is very important that you take good care of them.
We may be very conscious of our newly treated teeth for the first few days after treatment, but then as we get used to them, we tend to forget about them and start taking them more for granted.
Although most teeth replacements and restoration materials are made using porcelain or ceramic that don’t actually decay, it doesn’t mean that we don’t have to care for them the same way as we do for our natural teeth. Let’s look at how we should care for our treated teeth:
Fillings are usually made of either amalgam or a white composite material. It can be easy to forget where your tooth coloured fillings are as they blend in so well and look so natural. Try to remember that your newly filled tooth is still a strong tooth, but the larger the cavity that is filled can result in the tooth not being as strong as a tooth with a much smaller filling. So take care when biting down on hard foods using your filled teeth – try not to bite down too hard, or avoid using your filled teeth to bite with.
Filled teeth need cleaning in just the same way as you would your normal teeth. Keep an eye on your filled teeth and look for any signs of damage or small gaps appearing that separate your natural tooth from your filling. These gaps can give bacteria a chance to breed and cause further tooth decay.
Taking care of root canals
Root canals can be pretty tricky because they lack any sort of sensitivity. As you would have had your tooth nerves removed during the treatment, it can be hard to detect any underlying problems you may develop. While a root canal tooth is usually finished off with a crown, they are intended to be strong, but are still not quite as strong as your natural teeth. Try to avoid putting too much pressure on your treated tooth and keep an eye out for any swellings around the gums that may indicate an infection.
Crowns are commonly used when a tooth is so badly decayed or damaged that a filling would not provide it with enough strength or stability. While the crown itself cannot decay, it is tightly bonded to the surface of your natural tooth with a strong dental adhesive. Here it is important that you carefully brush all of the tooth, especially along the gum line. This will help to reduce the risk of developing gum disease that can weaken your tooth.
Crowns are designed to be strong, but they can sometimes become detached from the tooth surface. You will need to book in to see your dentist ASAP should this happen so that you can have it professionally reattached. You should not attempt to bond the crown yourself as this can allow bacteria to become trapped against your tooth, causing further decay and possible tooth loss.