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If you have minor, or even major damage to your smile, there are a number of ways to repair or replace your teeth. Crowns, bonds and veneers can conceal damage and correct stains on your teeth. Implants and dental bridges and dentures can replace teeth that you have lost. Of course, fillings can restore a tooth. If your teeth begin to look a little dark, a whitening treatment from your dentist can brighten your grin.

While all of these measures can improve your smile, you need to remember that it is still up to you to take care of your other teeth and your dental work. Cosmetic and restorative dentistry can work wonders, but it does not replace good oral hygiene.

Although crowns cover your tooth, the tooth is still vulnerable to decay at the gumline. If decay sets in, or if you develop gum disease, your crown could fail and possibly fall off. That will not only expose the tooth underneath but if your crown is supporting a bridge, that will no longer work properly. Gum disease can also destabilize your crowns. A dental bond can be used to repair a damaged tooth, but if you do not brush and floss, the rest of your tooth could fall victim to tooth decay. Veneers protect the fronts of your teeth, but they do not protect the backs. In order for your implants to remain in place and to keep them from failing, you must have healthy gums. Dentures need to be cleaned every day to remove accumulated food debris. Teeth with fillings need the care to make sure that they do not get more cavities, or that tooth material around the fillings does not become decayed. You may walk out of your dentist’s office with newly-whitened teeth, but dark colored food and drinks and tobacco use can dim your smile.

For your dental work to serve you well, you need to brush twice a day for two minutes at a time with a fluoride toothpaste, floss once a day, and see your dentist as often as he recommends to keep your mouth healthy and your dental work functioning. It is also up to you to limit or avoid foods, drinks, and substances that can damage your teeth. If you have one or more teeth in need of repair, our dentist, Dr. Robert P. Sherman will be happy to see you for an exam and a consultation. If you live in the Leawood, Kansas, area and need to make an appointment at Robert P. Sherman call 913-685-2171.