Translated literally, biomimetic dentistry means to copy what is life-like. Nature has provided the most successful and ideal properties to our natural teeth. When restoring damaged, broken, and decayed teeth, the goal is to return the tooth to its original strength, function, and esthetics. Biomimetic dentistry accomplishes all of this in a conservative, strong, and attractive approach.
Once significant damage has been done to a tooth, a crown is the restoration of choice in traditional dentistry. Teeth become structurally compromised when a large amount of the tooth is missing or damaged. Traditionally, crowns were indicated to restore strength to these structurally compromised teeth. However, crowns result in over 70% reduction of your original tooth structure. The problem is a majority of structurally compromised teeth will require even more reduction of healthy tooth structure in order to fit the crown which is supposed to strengthen the tooth.
This approach is fraught with problems. Crown preparations can lead to sensitivity, root canals, and fractures. A tooth with a crown behaves differently than a natural tooth and the stresses on the crown are more damaging to the remaining tooth structure. With Biomimetic dentistry, only the damage and decay is removed, and your final restoration is bonded to the healthy natural tooth structure. The final restoration is often referred to as an inlay or onlay restoration. There is no extra removal of healthy structures to fit a crown and the result is a conservative and strong final restoration.
In many instances, root canals can be completely avoided with these principles. Most Biomimetic Dentists report over 90% reduction in the number of root canals their patients receive. Removing excessive amounts of healthy tooth structure for a crown can inevitably result in sensitivity and irritation to the vital tooth which will require root canal treatment. By limiting removal of healthy tooth structure, Biomimetic Dentistry significantly reduces the necessity for root canal treatments. This is paramount to long term success and retention of your natural teeth.
Anytime a dental filling is performed, the filling shrinks as the light is applied which can result in gap formation in the filling, or shrinkage stresses are absorbed by the tooth. The Biomimetic approach minimizes shrinkage stresses with proper technique and use of the finest dental materials available based on scientific research.