How Dentists Can Fill Cavities

A dentist is someone that can completely change your oral health for the better. That is why it is so important to visit a professional dentist regularly. Visiting a dentist on a regular basis is one of the best things that you can do to improve your smile and overall oral health. Below, we will discuss some of the different ways that dentists can fill in cavities and some of the other ways they can keep your smile looking and feeling great.

What A Cavity Does

A cavity is essentially a hole left in an otherwise healthy tooth. It results when a tooth is subject to decay. This decay causes instability with the tooth, and it can continue to spread and infect the rest of the tooth if left untreated. This is why it is so important to handle cavities as soon as they are noticeable. Early detection and eradication of cavities can help to preserve a greater amount of the tooth structure and keep the rest of the tooth from being damaged. Dentists are able to then drill the tooth where the decay occurred and clean it up prior to filling it. By removing the decay, the tooth’s structure is saved, and it eliminates the risk of having it spread to the rest of the tooth.

How Dentists Fill In Cavities:

Cavities are filled in with different materials nowadays. There are different options selected on a case by case basis. Therefore, your dentist will likely speak with you about the different options that you have, and they will allow you to make an educated decision on which one you want to go with based on effectiveness and cost.

1. Composite Resin.

This is one of the most commonly used fillings that you will find in dentist offices. This is a good option for filling in cavities because it can replicate the same color as the original tooth, and it is a very durable material that can last upwards of 15 years. When the dentist inserts the composite material, it is capable of being molded to the exact shape of the original tooth structure, which helps to mimic the natural tooth structure as a whole. Thus, the filling ends up feeling and looking just like it did prior to the procedure.

2. Amalgam.

This is another material that dentists tend to use to fill in cavities. This is a material that includes a variety of different metals, and it is something that was primarily used in the past to fill in cavities. Therefore, it might be what you consider the traditional way of filling in cavities. These are typically used because they are less expensive, and they are even longer lasting than composite resin fillings. However, they do not have the same tooth-colored appearance and will ultimately stand out much more. Along with this, there is a fear that they can result in metal toxicity, which can cause potential long-term complications in certain individuals.

3. Ceramic.

Another option would be a ceramic cavity filling. This is typically going to be made up of porcelain. This particular filling is completely tooth colored which means that it is going to look just like your other teeth and your natural tooth that is being filled in. Along with this, it might even have the benefit of being less likely to show stains in the future compared to composite fillings. With that being said, these fillings are much more likely to be much more expensive than what you would expect to pay from other types of fillings. Because of this, some people might opt for a composite filling purely due to the potential price savings that you would incur with similar benefits. While ceramic fillings are some of the best in terms of the appearance, for some the price difference might not be justifiable.

4. Glass Lonomer.

This is another filling option that is likely to be presented to you. This particular filling is a blend of both glass and acrylic that is also capable of releasing fluoride to better protect the damaged teeth. However, it is one of the least durable and may only last up to 5 years at a time.

Why Do You Need Fillings?

If you are dealing with a tooth that has a cavity, you have to get the decayed portion removed. Without doing so, you are going to end up risking losing the entire tooth structure. When your tooth is decaying, everything is going to be sensitive, and it can continue to infect the rest of the tooth. Once the infection is removed, you need to have the structure filled back in because otherwise it would subject the rest of your tooth to inner nerves and it could even contribute to the build-up of plaque and bacteria inside of your cavities which would likely result in losing your tooth entirely. The filling is there to prevent bacteria and plaque from entering your decayed and removed portion of your tooth. Thus, it can help to restore the tooth to its natural function and help strengthen its structural integrity as a whole.

Overall, you are going to want to be sure to have your teeth looked at as soon as possible if you think that you might have a cavity. The sooner you spot a cavity, the more likely you will be able to save a large portion of your tooth. If you catch the cavity before it spreads to the rest of your tooth, you might only need to fill in a small portion of it. A filling is something that can help to restore your tooth to normal function and allow you to use the tooth as you normally would. It is also going to cover up any exposed nerves which can decrease the sensitivity that you are going to end up experiencing while your tooth is exposed. By calling on a professional dentist, you will be able to get your cavity dealt with professionally by someone that you trust. Try to find a reputable dentist that is going to be able to help you maintain optimal oral hygiene and overall health.