What is a filling?

  • before-dental-fillings
    Dental cavities have to be removed and replaced with fillings.

Fillings are material dentist use to fill holes created in your teeth. For instance, dentists use dental fillings to fix tooth cavities, broken teeth and many other dental problems. Receiving a dental filing is a relatively simple procedure which protects your teeth from developing infection or breaking off. Fillings are cost effective, easy and effective in protecting your damaged teeth.

When do I need a dental filling?

Fillings have lots of different implications in dentistry, for example:

  • Dentists use fillings to fix teeth damaged by dental cavities and tooth decay
  • We use fillings to repair cracked and fractured teeth
  • Cosmetic fillings, like bonding or composite veneers, are used to enhance the appearance of your front teeth
  • Fillings have other implications, such as restoring root canal treated teeth, repairing toothbrush abrasions, sealing dental implant abutments and more.

What are the different types of fillings?

  • silver-dental-fillings
    Silver fillings stand out and may not be as attractive

Dental fillings come in two common varieties, white fillings and silver fillings. Here is what you need to know about each one:

  • Silver Filling (Amalgam): Silver fillings contain mercury, which is a known toxin. Our office stays away from Amalgam because of its mercury content and poor aesthetic results.
  • White Filling (Composite): Tooth colored fillings are made from a plastic compound containing fillers. White fillings are both sturdy and aesthetically pleasing. Plus, they come in a variety of shades to best match your tooth color to give your teeth a natural looking appearance.
  • Gold Filling: In the old days, gold used to be the standard of care for fixing cavities. Nowadays, gold fillings are mostly obsolete due to high cost of gold and better looking alternatives.

How is a dental filling performed?

Dental fillings are a simple, cost-effective way to fight off cavities and repair broken teeth. Here is how a typical filling treatment is completed:

  • Anesthesia: Usually you will get numb prior to receiving your dental filling. Typically, 1 to 2 shots should be all that you need. Occasionally, some smaller fillings can be done without a shot or with laser instead.
  • Removing Tooth Decay: Once numb, your dentist will start removing the cavity from your tooth. This is to ensure that there are no decay bacteria left behind to cause a recurring infection in the future.
  • Filling the Tooth: Once your tooth has been prepared, the filling material is inserted into your tooth. The filling material hardens in a few minutes and fills in the voids created by removing cavity from your teeth.
  • Adjustments: Finally, your dentist will make sure that your filling is comfortable. Your dentist could check the bite, contact and smoothness of your filling to ensure it feels nice and comfortable. Pay close attention to the fit and look of your filling, or you will have to make an extra trip for an adjustment in the near future.

As you can see, getting a filling is a simple procedure and typically take just minutes to complete. However, neglecting to address your cavities and broken teeth can lead to bigger problems. Be sure not to ignore your dental problems and fix them before they cause pain of infection.

What limitations do dental fillings have?

Dental fillings are a great option to fix small and medium-sized cavities. However, you might not be able to repair teeth with larger cavities or deep fractures with a filling alone. Fillings can not restore severely decayed teeth, large cavities or extremely damaged teeth. For these larger dental defects, you typically need a crown or porcelain veneer instead. Your dentist will decide what is the best course of treatment after accessing your teeth and bite.

Dental filling in San Clemente:

Do you have a cavity or broken tooth which needs a filling? If you live in San Clemente and need to see a dentist, give us a call at (949)481-2540 or book online today. Our dentist, Dr. Jazayeri, will examine your teeth to see if a filling is a good option for you. We will discuss costs of a tooth filling to let you know exactly what to expect. Don’t delay treatment any longer, a cavity today can turn into an infection in less time than you imagine. The sooner you fix your cavities, the easier and more affordable treatment will be.

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