What Are Fillings And Do I Need One?

tooth fillingMany of us think about our twice-daily tooth brushing in terms of preventing cavities; it is how many of our parents and dentists contextualize the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene. Despite these efforts, tooth decay can still occur and when it does, your dentist will likely suggest a filling. In today’s blog, your Dallas, TX dentist discusses when you might need a filling and what goes into the process of placing one in your affected teeth. 

What Is A Cavity And How Do They Occur?

Before delving into treatment, it is important to talk about cavities. You certainly know they are bad, but their specific details aren’t often discussed. Cavities are a type of decay. Lifestyle choices, such as diet, typically cause them, though genetics can also affect how susceptible you are. Sugary and acidic foods and drinks are common culprits. The most common kind is known as coronal cavities. These are found on the tops (or chewing surfaces) of your teeth — often on molars — and between them. Root cavities can occur as well. As the name suggests, these are found in the roots of your teeth when your gum line recedes. It is essential to treat tooth decay as quickly as possible, so it doesn’t end up hurting the nerves deeper in your teeth, which can then cause abscesses. Ultimately, only your dentist can inform you of one’s presence.

What Happens If I Have One?

If a cavity develops, your dentist will likely recommend a filling. They will look for signs of abnormality when you come in for a check-up and cleaning. If they determine that there is decay, they will move forward with the procedure, which will get your tooth back to its normal health. There are several types made from different materials ranging from gold to silver amalgam to porcelain to composite resins. There are different benefits to each, and your dentist can recommend the one that’s right for your needs.

What Is The Procedure Like?

First, your dentist will give you local anesthesia, so you will not feel any pain. Next, they carefully drill into your enamel to remove any decay and then shape the space, so it can properly fit the filling. After the tooth is prepped, they will place the filling. Finally, they finish and polish the tooth so the new filling won’t feel out of place in your mouth. In the following weeks, your tooth might feel extra sensitive, but you shouldn’t worry. If you do experience persistent pain, reach out to your dentist. 

Contact Us If you Have Questions about Fillings

Tooth decay needs to be treated as quickly as possible, so if you have concerns, contact Gentle Smiles Family Dentistry in Dallas, TX at 972-329-7645. You can also visit our office at 10210 Scyene Rd. Dallas, TX 75227.