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Current Patients (918) 528-6555

7905 East 106th Street Tulsa, OK 74133

Difference Between Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry

Are you self-conscious about your smile because of gapped or broken teeth? You want to have them repaired, but don’t know if the dental procedure is a restorative or cosmetic one? The line between restoration dentistry and cosmetic dentistry can become blurred. Some procedures may appear cosmetic, but may have an underlying issue that requires restorative dentistry and vice versa.

Here is a description of each along with examples of respected dental procedures:

What is Cosmetic Dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry is any dental procedure that aims to improve the look (not necessarily the function) of a patient’s teeth, gums and bite. Cosmetic dental procedures involve altering the color, size, shape, position and alignment of the teeth and bite.

Common Cosmetic Dental Procedures:

  • All forms of Whitening
  • Tooth Reshaping
  • Tooth Bonding
  • Fixed Bridges
  • Veneers
  • Dental Implants
  • Gum Lift
  • Invisalign Treatment
  • Bite Adjustment
  • Inlays and Onlays
  • Porcelain Crowns

Patients typically get cosmetic dental procedures because they don’t like the appearance of their teeth or their smile. They may be embarrassed from stained teeth or gaps in between their teeth.  Their teeth may have been worn down over the years.  Cosmetic dentistry is dentistry of desire.

What is Restorative Dentistry?

Restorative dentistry aims at improving (or restoring) the function of the teeth and their supporting structures such as the gums. Improvement in the aesthetics of the teeth and gums are also another pleasant result of restorative dental procedures.

Common Restorative Dental Dentistry Procedures:

  • Porcelain Crowns
  • Fixed Bridges
  • Root Canal Therapy
  • Tooth Extractions
  • Dentures and Braces
  • Tooth-Colored Dental Fillings
  • Dental Surgery
  • Implants
  • Inlays and Onlays
  • Bite Adjustment

Restorative dental work is often required for patients who have a cavity, broken tooth, gum disease, or neglected their dental hygiene and care or have experienced dental trauma. Many older adults and seniors require restorative dental work as it becomes difficult for them to properly take care of their teeth and gums.

Some restorative dental work can be extensive, especially if there are many missing teeth or multiple teeth are in bad shape.   This category would be considered reconstructive dentistry, or full mouth rehabilitation. Sometimes patients have anxieties or are nervous about going to the dentist and getting the much-needed dental work done.  Many of our patients often choose sedation when undergoing lengthy rehabilitative or reconstructive procedures.

The most common sedation include gas, pills and IV sedation. Different sedation methods are appropriate for different situations. If you or someone you know has a fear of going to the dentist and have much-needed work to be done, contact Henrich Dental. We are a cosmetic and restorative dental office in Tulsa, OK, offering sedation dentistry.

Call us today to set up an appointment or to get more information about our dental and sedation services.