Getting a cavity filled is a quick procedure that will prevent you from having substantial damage in the future. The whole process only takes minutes. But the outcome ensures you maintain strong, healthy teeth for years to come. If you think you might need a cavity filled in the Houston area, contact the dentists at Lovett Dental North Heights by calling 832-617-5531.
What Is a Cavity?
A cavity is a small pit in a tooth that will lead to decay if left to rot. Cavity fillings are one type of filling procedure used to fill a cavity in your tooth. But fillings also repair other damage to teeth. Sometimes the dentist uses fillings for damage caused by teeth grinding, cracks in your tooth, or a broken tooth. Old cavity fillings also sometimes need replacement.
Dental fillings for your teeth include gold, silver amalgam, tooth-colored composite material, porcelain, and glass. The type of fillings you receive depends on your dentist, insurance coverage, cost, and personal preferences. For example, if you want your fillings to match your teeth, you receive tooth-colored composite fillings. Each type of filling varies in color and strength. The most commonly used materials include amalgam and composite.
What Do Dentists Use to Fill Cavities?
General dentists have used amalgam fillings for over a century. These fillings provide great strength and work well for filling chewing teeth, your molars. Made of a mix of metals, these fillings do show in your mouth when you laugh or smile. But they provide durability and low cost compared to other types of fillings. Most people opt for composite fillings today. Composite material combines glass or quartz in the resin, making them quite durable. Since they match your tooth color, no one sees your fillings when you laugh or smile.
Other types of fillings used by dentists today include gold, glass ionomer, and ceramic. Gold and ceramic fillings provide great durability. However, their cost makes them less reasonable for most people. Glass ionomer fillings do not provide the durability of other types, requiring replacement in about five years.
Chew Carefully After Having a Cavity Filled
Many people feel some pain or sensitivity immediately after receiving their fillings. But this goes away, and you will not feel your cavity fillings in your mouth. Taking care of your fillings requires the same daily oral care as your other teeth. Simply brush twice daily using fluoride toothpaste and floss each day. If you have any pain or blood when flossing, this is a sign that it is time to see your dentist.
Most tooth fillings last for years. But some wear out in several years from chewing. If you grind your teeth, your fillings wear out more quickly. Anytime you notice cracks or worn areas on your fillings, schedule a visit with your dentist for a possible filling replacement.
Avoid Future Dental Problems; Get Your Cavity Filled Today
If you suffer tooth decay around your filling, you may need to have that tooth restored. Sometimes dentists use dental crowns to repair badly damaged teeth instead of fillings. No matter of the severity your procedure, Lovett Dental North Heights has you covered. Having a cavity filled is a relatively minor procedure, but when a cavity is ignored, it can cause severe decay and lead to more expensive dental requirements. When a child gets a cavity in a baby tooth, it is important to have the cavity filled in order to prevent further decay.
Can a Dental Filling Break?
Fillings sometimes suffer damage due to chewing sticky substances or even due to infection. When a filling pulls away from the natural tooth surface, the gap fosters bacteria growth. This leads to additional tooth decay. Anytime you notice a gap between your tooth and the filling, contact your dentist for an appointment. Regular dental cleanings can also help you avoid cavities.
Like natural teeth, fillings can break, crack, or fall out. This damage occurs when biting down on hard food or objects, such as popcorn kernels, ice, or hard candy. They can also break from injury to your mouth, such as during sports. While this is cause for concern, many people are surprised to learn that fixing these problems is easier than they think. You should visit your dentist anytime you notice changes to your filling to avoid irritation and infection.
Compassionate Dentistry Makes All The Difference
At Lovett Dental North Heights, our team provides fillings and a wide range of other dentist services for your entire family. This dental care includes:
- Restorative dentistry
- Porcelain veneers
- Smile whitening
- Family and children’s dentistry
- Cosmetic dentistry