Cavities present a dental challenge because they develop without any symptoms. And, when left untreated they can damage your teeth and lead to an extraction. Fortunately, the dentist can correct the problem before it spread to the inner part of the teeth using teeth fillings.
These are restorations used to restore the function, integrity, and strength of your damaged teeth. Our tooth filling dentist will remove the damaged area and replace it with a tooth filling.
As the teeth cavities advance, you’ll start to experience:
You may also need dental fillings after a root canal has been done. The dentist uses them as a temporary measure and the dental crowns are made.
Several types of fillings are available and they differ in durability, appearance, and cost.
For years these have been the commonly used dental fillings. They are made of a combination of mercury and other metals such as copper, tin, and silver. These filings are durable and can last for a couple of years.
However, most people are opting for other non-mercury fillings because of the growing concerns about mercury levels. Mercury in high levels causes toxicity and affects the cardiovascular and nervous system. The ADA has, however, reported that amalgam fillings are safe for use.
These are made of a mix of gold, copper, and other materials. They are very durable and can withstand the biting and chewing pressure, but are more expensive. These fillings are not aesthetically pleasing and therefore are ideal for the back teeth.
Porcelain is as expensive as metal fillings. But, one benefit is that they have a natural tooth-color. They offer a seamless look and will resemble your teeth. They are made in the lab and they take the impression of the teeth.
They are made from glass and acrylic, and they can be crafted to look like your natural teeth. Also, they release fluoride which strengthens the teeth and prevents cavities. But, on the downside, these fillings are not as durable. They are mostly used on children.
Fixing of the teeth fillings takes about an hour or less depending on the location of the decayed teeth and the size of the fillings used.
Our dentist near you will first numb the gums with local anesthesia to ease the discomfort. Next, he will use a drill, a laser, or an air abrasion instrument to get rid of the decayed part. The dentist will clean the area and test it to check if there is any decay left.
Once the area is free of decay, the dentist cleans the space in preparation for the filling. The filling is them fixed and left to set. The process of fixing the filling may take longer if a composite filling is used. This is because it is fixed in layers until the desired shape is achieved.
How long it takes for the filling to set will depend on the material used. The amalgam fillings take 24 hours for a full-strength setting.
Composite and glass ionomer fillings are lightly cured. These filings are set in layer and it takes about 20 seconds per layer to set.
The ceramic fillings are set immediately. Regardless of the setting time, it is best to avoid eating hard and sticky foods in the first 24 hours.
Most fillings heal quickly and cause no problem. However, you may experience sensitivity as the anesthesia begins to wear out. But, the sensitivity will clear in a day or two.
Metal and amalgam fillings have a period of sensitivity for a few days or weeks after they are fixed. If the sensitivity is severe, visit a dentist near you for treatment.
Visit Smiles 2 You Dental Center for more information about dental fillings. Call us now to book an appointment with our dentist near you. We also cater to patients residing in Northlake, The Ponderosa, Oak Grove Acres, Empire Square, Idlewood, Sagamore Hills, Briarcliff Woods, and surrounding areas.