Dental decay is, by far, the most common dental problem. However, many people know so little about it. This blog will discuss one of the most common cavity treatment options, dental fillings, in detail. But before we get to that, what causes cavities?
Bacteria cause dental in our mouths. Our mouths are full of bacteria, both good and bad. The good bacteria help with digestion, while bad bacteria cause decay and other dental infections. Typically, when bad bacteria meet with food particles, they form acids. These acids attack the enamel, leading to cavities.
There are various treatments for cavities, and dental fillings treatment is one of the most common. However, this procedure does more than fill cavities. Hopefully, learning more about the procedure will help you make an informed decision regarding the treatment.
Decay Can Affect Fillings
If you fail to maintain proper oral hygiene, tooth decay can reappear underneath the fillings. However, it is worth noting that the cavity-causing acids do not affect the dental cavity filling material.
What happens is the fillings will wear down with time, leading to cracks. When that happens, the bacteria can get access to the tooth, causing cavities. Continue brushing and flossing your teeth as recommended to prevent that from happening. Also, visit your dentist every six months for checkups.
Dental Filling Materials Are Different
Not so long ago, amalgam (silver) fillings were the only option for fillings. Now, there are several dental filling types, some of which match the color of your teeth. Composite resin fillings are the most common nowadays. Here are the different types of dental fillings:
- Glass ionomer fillings, which are mostly used for smaller cavities.
- Resin ionomer fillings, which are often used for baby and non-chewing teeth
- Ceramic dental fillings: Ceramic fillings are excellent for all teeth. They mimic the color of your teeth. However, as much as they are strong, they are susceptible to cracks. For that reason, they are not recommended for molars.
Generally, the material perfect for your condition will depend on several factors, including the location of the tooth, your budget, and the severity of the cavity. Your dentist will help you choose the right material.
Dental Fillings Are Typically Done In One Visit
The dental filling procedure is short, and, in most cases, a single visit to the dentist is enough. If the tooth is severely decayed, the dentist will numb you to ensure the procedure is as painless as possible. He will then remove the decayed hard tissue and fill the hole with your choice’s filling material.
After that, the dentist will harden the filling and allow you to go home. The sedation effects may stay in your blood for up to 26 hours, so be sure to come with someone to drive you home.
Also, the numbness effect may last for a few hours. For that reason, avoid eating something until the nerves are back to normal to avoid accidentally biting your gums, lips, or tongue. Remember, if you bite yourself when numb, you won’t feel any pain.
Dental Filling Is Not The Sole Treatment For Cavities
Just because you have a decayed tooth, it does not mean it will need to be filled with filling materials. There are various cavity treatments, and fillings procedure is not always the ideal option. If the tooth has a way too large cavity, the dentist will consider using a dental crown.
Sometimes, the dentist may need to use root canal therapy to save the tooth if the decay is so extensive. If root canal therapy does not work, the dentist may have to extract the tooth.
Dental Fillings Do Not Last Forever
Like your natural teeth, dental fillings wear down with time. In fact, nothing can last as your natural teeth. That said, you will need to replace the fillings from time to time.
How long your treatment will last will be determined by the material used, how well it was installed, and how well you take care of the treatment. You can generally expect amalgam fillings to last up to 15 years and composite resin up to seven years.
Ganger Family Dentistry
Do you need a dental filling or repair? Our dentist in Chicago, IL, is ready to help you, and we assure you of high-quality services. We are open Monday through to Friday, and we are accepting new patients. Book an appointment now.