Dental fillings are a dental procedure used to fill small holes in teeth that are the result of either fractures or decay.
Dental fillings are a dental procedure used to fill small holes in teeth that are the result of either fractures or decay. Decay is brought on by bacterial infections. Bacteria are found on your teeth when they are not brushed or flossed correctly. Tooth decay is also from a poor diet, lifestyle habits, drug use, medication, medical conditions and more. Dental fillings cover holes in your teeth to protect the sensitive pulp and prevent further damage from occurring.
The conscientious and thoughtful staff at Northside Dental share a common philosophy and that is to treat you as a person first, as a patient second. We recognize the value of your time, anxiety level, comfort, budget, and your lifestyle. We enjoy working together with you in the development and implementation of your personalized dental treatment plan. We also consider ourselves an important part of your team for your overall health program. Call us today at 317-848-9838 to schedule your appointment or stop in and say hi at 15026 Greyhound Ct. Carmel, IN 46032.
Metal versus Composite Fillings
The only major difference between composite and amalgam fillings is the material used. Dental amalgam is a blend of several metals, including mercury and silver. It has been used reliably for dental fillings to fill teeth in the US since the nineteenth century. History records of a similar amalgam of mercury, silver, and tin are even mentioned in Chinese medical texts as far back as the first century.
Beginning in the 1990s, technology advances in dentistry produced new options for filling damaged teeth. One of the most popular of these is now composite fillings. The material used for composite fillings is also a mixture of polymers that will adhere to the tooth surface and are then hardened with a blue light. You may prefer this type of filling because it does not contain mercury. Also, because it is tooth-colored, it is not easily visible. Composite resins are strong enough to withstand biting pressures from the back teeth, and usually last ten years or more, making them a practical, and attractive alternative to metal amalgam.
The Dental Filling Process
Dental fillings are a quite common dental procedure. In fact, according to the American Dental Association there are about 175 million dental fillings placed each year. Northside Dental will perform several fillings in a single day. The process is simple and can be completed in less than an hour in most cases.
The first step is to identify the exact location of the cavity by taking an x-ray. Then to prepare for the dental filling we will administer a local anesthetic to the immediate area so you will not experience any discomfort. Next, we need to clean the tooth and any decay removed from the tooth with a high-speed dental drill.
Northside Dental will work with you to determine the right cavity filling material for your needs and preferences. The tooth has a final cleaning and then prepared to receive the filling material. If you choose a composite filling, less tooth surface needs to be removed and altered than if you are having metal fillings placed. The material is placed, hardened and the procedure is complete.
The Different Types of Dental Fillings
There are several types of tooth fillings used at Northside Dental today. These include both traditional metal fillings, as well as composite fillings, which are newer and are growing in popularity.
- Metal Fillings These fillings are made from several different types of materials including amalgam, which is the silver filling material that you are probably familiar with and expect to have placed in your cavities. Amalgam is made from a metal alloy containing mercury, silver, tin, and copper. These dental fillings are very inexpensive and incredibly durable. If you have a metal dental filling placed in a tooth you might have it for the rest of your life without ever needing to have it replaced or repaired. Another type of metal filling that is less popular but available, and more expensive than amalgam fillings is gold cast fillings. This type of dental filling is less common and takes longer to set.
- Composite Fillings These fillings are less visible than other fillings because they are the color of your tooth. Unlike their metal counterparts, composite dental fillings are made from a mixture of plastic and glass and are then bonded to the tooth. This type of filling is more expensive than the traditional fillings, but they are far more visually pleasing and can also last a long time.
- Porcelain Fillings Porcelain fillings are the newest type of dental filling that uses the latest in technological advancements in the dental industry. These fillings are incredibly strong and look just like your real teeth. They do not stain, and they can last for decades if taken care of properly.
Dental Filling Aftercare
Once your filling procedure is finished, you may continue to have a numbing sensation in the area for a few hours. Once the numbness has worn off, you are able to resume your daily activities. You simply treat your new filling just like you do the rest of your teeth and that is to continue to brush and floss properly, so your filling lasts a long time.
During your regular check-ups with Northside Dental, we will check the integrity of the filling and make sure that no further decay has occurred. You might experience some sensitivity for a few weeks following your filling as well. This is common and will subside after some time.
If you have any pain in the area, please let our team know right away. If your dental filling ever cracks or falls out, make an appointment right away with us to have it repaired or replaced to prevent any further damage from occurring in the tooth and surrounding teeth.
Your preventive dental care is part of the difference with choosing Northside Dental. Our entire staff realizes how inconvenient and even difficult it might be to visit the dentist. That is why our staff does our best to schedule your appointments when it is most convenient for you. We also focus on working effectively and efficiently to ensure your appointment goes both quickly and smoothly. Our team goal is to be considered your family dentist. We always embrace the opportunity to help you and your children maintain your oral health with solid preventative care. As you step into our clinic, we will welcome you and make you comfortable. Call us today at 317-848-9838 to schedule your appointment or stop in and say hi at 15026 Greyhound Ct. Carmel, IN 46032.