Glossary of Terms

Glossary of Terms

We are providing a

Glossary of Terms

We are providing a summary glossary of terms which are used regularly in dentistry. We hope you find them useful but if you require further information, don’t hesitate to call Vard Dental 01 2855 841 or email us at david.vard@varddental.ie

 

Abscess A local infection resulting in the collection of pus under pressure.  A dental abscess may be caused by severe decay, trauma, or gum disease and can cause swelling and pain.
Abutment Abutments are the part of the bridge used to support the replacement of the missing teeth
Amalgam Amalgams are also known as silver fillings.  Amalgams are usually placed on t he back teeth.
Anaesthetic A local anaesthetic relieves the sensation of pain in a localised area
Bridge A fixed appliance that replaces missing teeth.  A bridge is a series of crowns.
Bruxism Bruxism is the clenching or grinding of teeth
Calculus Calculus which is also known as tartar is hardened (calcified) plaque.
Canal A tooth canal is the narrow chamber inside the root of the tooth that contains the nerve and blood vessels of the tooth
Canine The canine tooth is the third tooth from the centre of the mouth to the back of the mouth.  It is also known as the “eye tooth” and has a pointed edge used for biting
Care Plan A care plan, also known as a treatment plan, is a list of procedures and related costs recommended to treat a patients dental needs
Cavity / Cavities Cavity or cavities is another name for tooth decay.
Composite Restoration Composite or resin restoration is also known as white filling
Crown A crown can be a porcelain or gold cover for a decayed or damaged tooth that has a strong root base
Cusps Cusps are the high points on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.  Back teeth are also known as posterior teeth
Deciduous Teeth Deciduous teeth are the baby teeth which are also known as milk teeth.  There are twenty deciduous teeth
Denture A denture is a removable appliance that replaces missing teeth.  It is usually made of plastic or metal.
Enamel Enamel is the hard, outer shiny layer of the tooth.
Extractions An extraction is the removal of a tooth.
Endodontics Endodontics, commonly known as root canal treatment, is the treatment of diseases or injuries that affect the root tip or nerve of the tooth.
Fissure Sealant Fissure sealant is a clear or coloured application of resin, over the biting surface of the tooth, to help prevent decay.  It is most commonly placed on newly erupted first permanent molar teeth
Gingivitis Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums characterised by redness, bleeding and swelling.
Implant An implant is a post that is implanted in the jaw bone.  A crown, bridge or denture may then be retained by the implant
Incisors The central and lateral incisors are the first and second teeth from the centre of the mouth to the back of the mouth.
Inlay / Onlay An inlay is a laboratory processed restoration made of metal, acrylic, composite or porcelain.
Mandible The mandible is the lower jaw
Maxilla The maxilla is the upper jaw
Molar Teeth The first, second and third molar teeth are the sixth, seventh and eighth teeth from the centre of the mouth to the back of the mouth.
Night Guard A night guard is a removable acrylic/plastic appliance which minimises the effects of grinding the teeth or joint problems.  It is usually worn at night to prevent grinding.
Orthodontics Orthodontics is one of the specialised fields of dentistry concerned with irregularities in the growth and development of teeth
Paedodontics Paedodontics is the specialisation in the dentistry of children
Palate The roof of the mouth is known as the palate
Partial denture A removable appliance that replaces some of the teeth in either the upper or lower jaw
Periodontics Periodontics is the branch of dentistry concerned with diseases affecting the tissues and structures that surround teeth
Permanent molars The adult first and second molars are the sixth and seventh teeth from the centre of the mouth to the back of the mouth.
Plaque Plaque is a sticky, bacteria laden film on the teeth.  If it is not removed by brushing it will harden into tartar which is also known as calculus
Premolars The first and second bicuspids are the fourth and fifth teeth from the centre of the mouth to the back of the mouth.  These are the back teeth that are used for chewing.
Preventive Preventive procedures or treatments are used to prevent decay and gum disease
Primary teeth Primary teeth are also known as deciduous teeth or milk teeth
Restorative Restorative procedures or treatment are performed to restore the missing part of the teeth
Root Canal Treatment A root canal treatment is the performed to remove nerves from the canal inside the root and replace it with a filling material.  It can be the first phase of restoring a tooth
Root planing Root planing is the deep cleaning of the teeth to remove tartar (also known as calculus) from below the gumline
Sealant Sealant, also known as fissure sealant, is a clear or coloured application of resin, over the biting surface of the tooth, to help prevent decay.  It is most commonly placed on newly erupted first permanent molar teeth
Treatment Plan A treatment plan, also known as a care plan, is a list of procedures and related costs recommended to treat a patients dental needs
Ulcers Mouth ulcers are infected boils which are can be found in the mouth
Veneer A veneer is a porcelain or composite “cover” placed on a tooth.  Veneers are commonly used to improve the look of a tooth
Wisdom Teeth The third molar, which is the eight tooth from the centre of the mouth to the back of the mouth