We know that sometimes, accidents happen. You mean to brush and floss your teeth every day, twice a day. Sometimes life gets in the way. You have a new baby, or you have a sick child. You have a huge new job at work. Maybe you are dealing with parents who are ill. Whatever the situation is, you have let your dental health slip. You really didn’t notice, until you started feeling pain in one of your teeth. We hate to have to suggest this, but it may be that you need a filling. While getting a filling may sound horrible, it is one of the best things you can do for your teeth. Not sure what we’re talking about? Let Lincoln Center Smiles tell you about the wonder of fillings.
What Are Fillings?
When you don’t practice good dental health practices, you allow plaque to build up on your teeth and gums. Over time, bacteria form on the plaque and begin to eat away at your tooth enamel. Those holes begin as minuscule spots. But over time, those spots can create big holes in your tooth enamel. The bacteria will get further and further into your teeth until they hit the middle of your tooth, called the pulp. That is when you will begin to feel tooth pain. These cavities - what the holes are called - will continue to grow bigger until they are fixed. Fillings allow us to fix your tooth by stopping the cavity before you need a root canal or extraction and dental implant.
How Do Fillings Work?
We would first drill into your tooth to remove the decay that happens when cavities (or holes) form in your tooth. We take as little of your tooth enamel as possible when we drill your tooth. However, after we have finished drilling your tooth, we need to fill the tooth. That’s because if we don’t fill the tooth with material, the tooth is weakened, and more prone to disease. Placing a filling makes the tooth stronger.
What Material Is Used to Make Fillings?
We have two different kinds of fillings we can use. In the past, nearly all dentists used silver amalgam fillings. However, many people are not comfortable with the composition of the fillings or the look of the fillings. Silver amalgam fillings used to have mercury in them - and mercury is not considered safe. However, we have silver fillings that are mercury-free. Some people would rather have a filling that is closer to the color of their teeth, however.
Now, we usually use a composite filling. Composite fillings are the same color as your teeth. They are also less expensive than silver amalgam fillings. Which kind of filling we use depends on which tooth you have a cavity in, and the size of the filling. We will make a decision which filling will keep your tooth strong and healthy. If your cavity is in the front of your mouth, we would most likely use a composite filling, so that it is not noticeable, for example. Do you think you might need a filling? Why not call Lincoln Center Smiles at (503) 598-0898?