Professional dentists use dental fillings to remove the decayed parts of the tooth, clean the affected area and then fill the cleaned out the cavity with filling materials.
Furthermore, dental filling also prevents further decay by closing off spaces where bacteria can penetrate. Without it, your tooth is exposed to crack, chip or break inward from trauma.
Read more to learn what type of dental fillings is best for you and where you can visit a professional dentist to get dental fillings in Dallas Tx
When does the dentist recommend a dental filling?
During a checkup, professional dentists can detect whether you have a cavity that needs to be filled. They usually make it by using a small mirror to examine the surfaces of each tooth or may also X-ray your entire mouth or a section of it.
But, there are still some visible signs that help you to know it is time to see a dentist, including:
- A chipped, broken or rough tooth
- A lost or broken filling
- Food that always gets stuck between your teeth
- A hole you can see or touch in your teeth by your tongue
- When your floss tears in a certain spot
- Gray or dark spot on certain teeth
What type of dental fillings is best for me?
Gold, porcelain, a composite resin (tooth-colored fillings), and an amalgam (an alloy of mercury, silver, copper, tin and sometimes zinc) are the used materials. Accordingly Gold, Amalgam (silver), Composite (plastic) resins, and Porcelain are the well-known types. Based on another category, fillings are divided into directs and indirect.
When it comes to choosing the material, there is no “Best” one! Many factors such as the extent of the repair, having allergies to certain materials and the area in your mouth where the filling is needed come into play and affect the cost.
Gold fillings are often the most expensive choice and are made to order in a laboratory. Gold inlays last more than 15 years. For this reason, many consider gold as the best material. But you need to consider a fact that it requires multiple visits.
The second known material is silver amalgam filling. It has a dark color and is more noticeable than porcelain or composite restorations. However, it is resistant to wear and relatively inexpensive. Silvers are not usually used in very visible tooth structure, such as front teeth.
If you are searching for tooth-colored materials, Composite (plastic) resins would be suggested to you. They are highly used where a natural appearance is desired.
Comparing to silver ones, Composites may not be the ideal material for large fillings as they may chip or wear over time. They also become stained from coffee, tea or tobacco which you need to consider. In compare to golden ones, plastic resins last generally from 3 to 10 years, which is less than other types of fillings.
Porcelain, or in other word inlays or onlays are produced to order in a lab and then bonded to the tooth. Another similar trait between them and gold ones are their cost but unlike them, Porcelain can be matched to the color of the tooth and resist staining.
The glass-and-acrylic filling is proper for children whose teeth are still changing; since it releases fluoride and can protect a tooth from further decay. Comparing to the composite material, this type is significantly weaker, more likely to crack and lasts less than 5 years. And one important thing that you should notice is that classic glass ionomer does not match tooth color as precisely as composite resins.
Indirect fillings are similar to composite or tooth-colored fillings except they are made in a dental laboratory and require multiple visits. Indirect fillings are considered when not enough tooth structure remains to support a filling but the tooth is not so severely damaged that it needs a crown.
There are two types of indirect fillings: In-lays and On-lays. Inlays are similar to fillings but the entire work lies within the bumps on the surface of the tooth.
On-lays are more extensive than inlays, and sometimes called referred to as crowns.
It is said that Inlays and on-lays weaken the tooth structure but do so to a much lower extent than direct fillings. They last longer than traditional ones, up to approximately 30 years. They can be made of tooth-colored composite resin, porcelain, or gold. Inlays and on-lays.
How long does it take to have a cavity filled?
If your dentist decides to fill a cavity, he or she will remove the decay to clean the affected area. In the next step, the cleaned-out cavity will then be filled with any of the variety of materials described above. So the estimated time for a typical filling procedure is about an hour. In case you have several cavities to be filled, your dentist will do it in multiple visits.
It is also possible that your dentist will not recommend you repairing the tooth with filling material if the pulp is involved. In this case, you are recommended with endodontic (root canal) treatment.
You can ask your dentist to have tooth fillings replaced If you clench or grind your teeth.