The Facts About Dental Fillings and Types Available to Fix Cavities

The Facts About Dental Fillings and Types Available to Fix Cavities

Sep 01, 2020

If cavities are a chronic problem affecting a significant population of the United States, is it possible that a remedy to this problem be far behind? Dentists have discovered methods to fill cavities with dental fillings made from different materials to suit every patient’s unique needs.

When treating cavities, the dentist in Bethel, CT, removes the decayed portion of the tooth and fills the area where the decayed material existed. Fillings are also useful for repairing broken and worn down teeth from misuse like nailbiting and bruxism.

Dental fillings have been around for quite some time and are used for treating cavities or damages to the teeth from the reasons mentioned above. Innovations in dentistry have ensured more varieties are presently available than earlier to repair teeth damaged by decay or other reasons.

What Are the Steps for Filling a Tooth?

The dentist performing dental filling in Bethel, CT, numbs the area around the tooth with a local anesthetic. After that, the dentist uses a drill, laser, or air abrasion instrument to extract the decayed area. The device used will depend on the preference of the dentist, along with their training and investment in a particular piece of equipment.
After the decay is removed, the dentist inspects the area to ensure no infection exists in the tooth. The vacant space is prepared for the filling by cleaning the cavity of bacteria and debris. If the decay is deep down and near the root, the dentist may initially put a liner made from glass ionomer or other material to protect the nerve. After the procedure is completed, the dentist will finish and polish the tooth.

Types of Filling Materials Presently Available

The following types of filling materials are presently available and frequently used to repair issues with the teeth. They are:

Cast Gold

  • Cast gold fillings are durable and last for 10 to 15 years without corroding. They can withstand the strength of chewing forces, and some patients find them pleasing to the eye than silver or amalgam.
  • However, cast gold fillings are expensive and cost ten times more than amalgam fillings. They require multiple visits to the dentist’s office when having the tooth filled or repaired. Many patients have reported they don’t find the colored fillings pleasing to the eye.

Silver Amalgam Fillings.

  • Silver amalgam fillings are also durable and can last for a decade or more and better than composite fillings. They are also durable and can withstand chewing forces. Best of all, they are less expensive than composite fillings.
  • Silver amalgam filling don’t match the color of your natural teeth and therefore results in poor aesthetics. More tooth structure must be removed to make space for holding silver amalgam fillings. They are susceptible to discoloration and create a greyish hue to the neighboring tooth structure. Some people also experience allergic reactions from silver amalgam fillings because of the mercury present in these restorations.

Tooth-Colored Composite Fillings.

  • Tooth-colored composite fillings are closely matched to the existing tooth’s color and are particularly suited to visible parts of the teeth. They are bonded to the tooth structure to provide it additional support. Besides using these fillings to repair decay, they can also be used to restore chipped or broken teeth. Tooth-colored composite fillings do not require much of the tooth structure removed than metal dental fillings and silver amalgam fillings.
  • Despite being aesthetically pleasing, tooth-colored fillings wear out faster than amalgam lasting for five years against 10 to 15 years for amalgams. If used for filling large cavities, they may not be able to withstand the pressure of chewing. The time needed to accomplish the filling process is approximately 20 percent higher than amalgams, and the cost is also higher. Tooth-colored fillings are prone to chipping and therefore have a set of disadvantages that must be considered.

Besides the varieties discussed, you can also find ceramic fillings or glass ionomer fillings used for children to fill cavities. Innovations in dentistry have ensured that you can even get indirect fillings fabricated in a dental laboratory before being placed on your teeth.

The need for dental fillings does not indicate that you have tooth decay or are maintaining poor oral hygiene. It could also result from cracking or breaking your teeth because of accidents, sporting activities, and issues like bruxism. The varieties available at numerous and more innovations are likely to be introduced soon. Fillings are the best solution to enhance your teeth’ appearance and keep them healthy.

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