Sometime people develop tooth decay. Tooth decay is often caused by the sugary foods and drinks we consume. Combined with poor hygiene, plaque and tartar can form on the tooth, causing cavities. The bacteria and acids that live in our mouth can also contribute to it. So can medical problems and dry mouth.
If you have a cavity in a tooth, then it needs to be filled. A filling fills in the hole left by the decay and prevents further damage. There are many types of fillings to choose from.
If you have a cavity, make sure you get it taken care of. Your dentist will need to remove the decay and close up the hole to prevent even more decay. Schedule a filling today. Call Family Dental Westborough at (508) 366-7450.
The Filling Process
The first step when filling a tooth is to numb it. This is so it won’t be too uncomfortable when the dentist removes the decay. The decay is removed with a laser or drill. Once all the decay has been removed, the dentist will thoroughly clean the tooth to rid it of all bacteria and debris. The next step is to place the filling inside the tooth.
The process may vary slightly, depending on the type of filling. For a tooth-colored filling, the dentist will apply the material in layers and harden them with a special light. Once all the layers have been applied, the dentist will shape the material, make any adjustments and then polish the tooth as a final step.
If the cavity is large, a filling may not be sufficient due to significant damage. Therefore, a crown may be needed to preserve the tooth. In some cases, the decay has reached the roots. This may require one of two procedures: either a root canal or pulp capping. The difference between the two is that a root canal removes the damaged nerve, while pulp capping keeps it alive.
Types of Fillings
When it comes to dental fillings, you have options. Make sure you choose the right one to fit your needs. Each material has its pros and cons. Some are more costly than others, so keep your budget in mind. You should also get recommendations from your dentist.
Composite fillings are preferred by many. They look the best, as they are tooth-colored and natural-looking. They bond to the tooth to provide more support. Composite fillings are often used in the bonding process to fix damaged teeth. However, they can be weak, as they chip easily. They may require multiple dentist visits and can be expensive.
Ceramic or porcelain fillings also match the color of your surrounding teeth, so they are virtually undetectable. They can last a long time – 15 years or more. They are more resistant to staining than other filling materials, but can be expensive.
Gold fillings are very durable. They can last 10-15 years. They are resistant to corrosion and can withstand chewing forces, so they work well for back molars. They look better than amalgam fillings. However, they are the most expensive of all materials and can cost thousands of dollars, depending on the size of the cavity.
Amalgam fillings are silver-colored and made of silver, mercury, copper, zinc and tin. They also last about 10-15 years. They are less expensive than other fillings but also very durable. However, they tend to stand out due to their silver color. They work best on back teeth, where they are less noticeable. Silver fillings are prone to cracks, since they tend to expand and contract at high rates.
Glass ionomer fillings are made of acrylic and glass. They are not commonly used, though. This is because they are not very strong and last just a few years. However, they work well for children because they release fluoride, which can strengthen teeth and prevent tooth decay.
Schedule A Consultation Today
Contact Family Dental of Westborough to schedule your consultation. Our friendly staff would be delighted to assist you and your family.
Call (508) 366-7450 or book an appointment online. Most major insurances are accepted and new patients are welcome. We look forward to meeting you.