A cavity is an area of decay or a hole in a tooth. Once the decay has progressed through the outer covering of the tooth (the enamel), a filling is required to protect the tooth from further damage. A filling is a synthetic material, usually made from a composite resin, porcelain, or gold, which restores structure and function to the tooth once decay has been removed.
Dental fillings are biocompatible ceramic materials that are used to fill cavities. They help restore the affected teeth and prevent them from crumbling or getting further infected. Dental fillings provide support to the teeth by filling in the gaps between them. They are also used to cap cracked teeth, cover worn teeth, or reshape misshapen teeth.
What are the different types of dental fillings?
There are four main types of fillings:
- Amalgam fillings
- Composite fillings
- Gold fillings
- Ceramic fillings
When do I need a dental filling?
A dental filling is recommended when you have tooth decay. Your tooth may require a filling when:
- A cavity has developed
- Your tooth has been fractured
- You have chipped your tooth
- Your tooth is severely damaged
What is the procedure involved?
The dentist will examine your mouth before initiating the procedure. An x-ray will be taken to determine whether an infection exists or not. If you have a cavity, it will be cleaned meticulously before starting the filling procedure. The dentist then prepares your tooth by etching it with an acid solution to remove the decay and rough it up. Once this is done, the dentist places the filling material on it and shapes it accordingly before curing it with intense light. After this, you will be given a bite test to check whether your teeth fit together properly or not.
Are dental fillings permanent?
Dental fillings are not permanent. However, they can last for years and may need to be replaced after several years. Fillings can last between 5 and 15 years. Many factors can affect the longevity of dental fillings, including their material, size, placement, and the amount of stress they are exposed to.
How can you take care of your dental fillings?
Your dental fillings will last longer if you follow proper oral hygiene practices such as brushing and flossing regularly. You should also avoid chewing hard foods like ice cubes or unpopped popcorn kernels as they may damage your dental fillings. Regular visits to the dentist will help detect any issues in your mouth early and treat them successfully before they turn into something worse.
To learn more about the dental services at Pacific Woods Dental, call 503-292-5483, and schedule an appointment now!