Cavities could lead to many dental problems, including tooth loss. That is why it’s important to put a filling in a cavity. People who neglect their cavities tend to suffer from dental damages that are hard to reverse. The filling procedure can be in the dental office right away. Check these tips to prevent cavities.
Why You Need A Cavity Filling
Cavities should be taken seriously. These are the small holes in the teeth that cause discomfort over time. They start to develop if bacteria, saliva, and acid in the mouth are combined together. With poor oral care, cavities will most likely develop rapidly.
So how will you know if you need a filling for your cavity? Below are the common indicators of cavities:
- sudden tooth pain
- teeth sensitivity to hot and cold
- pain when you drink or eat
- obvious holes in the teeth
- extreme tooth discoloration
If you experience the mentioned symptoms, contact your dentist immediately and set an appointment.
What To Expect
If your dentist found a cavity during your regular dental check-up, he or she will suggest a cavity filling right then and there. In most cases, the filling procedure lasts for an hour and requires an x-ray as well. You will be enlightened about the procedure and how it will conclude. The aftercare procedures will also be discussed with you for a smooth recovery period.
Here is the step by step procedure in filling a cavity:
- The treatment site will be numbed up by anesthesia. A needle will be used to insert the anesthetics properly. Younger patients receive this anesthesia as well, sometimes, it’s even accompanied by laughing gas to calm them down.
- Your dentist will wait for a few minutes until the anesthesia kicks in.
- To removes the damages, it will be drilled or lasered. Depending on your doctor’s preference.
- Next, a gel will be applied to the teeth for cleansing.
- After the cleaning, the application of the fillings will follow.
- The tooth will be sealed and protected with adhesives and composite material.
- To keep the material in place, your dentist might use a bonding light.
- Lastly, the tooth will be polished.
Different Types of Fillings For Cavity
Due to the advancements in dental technology, dentists are now offering several options for fillings. The best type of cavity filling will depend on your budget, the coverage of your insurance, and of course, what your doctor suggests. Amalgam and composite are the most commonly used fillings nowadays, however, there are other options for you to choose from. Listed below are the different kinds of cavity fillings along with their respective advantages:
- Composite. Composite resins are tooth-colored, making them an ideal option if you want your fillings to be subtle. This type of cavity filling is made of glass or quartz and is durable for biting and chewing. At Boutique Dental Care in Chatswood, they prefer offering composite over amalgam fillings.
- Amalgam. Alamgam fillings have been used by many doctors for decades. In fact, it is the most well-known filling for cavity ever since dental fillings began. What makes amalgam so special is its strength and durability. But the drawback is that they are quite noticeable since these are made of combined metallic elements.
- Ceramic. If budget is out of the question, ceramic fillings are the right ones for you. This filling is made of porcelain and can match the exact color of your tooth. One of its advantages is that it does not stain easily. Yet, its price is quite higher than the others.
- Metals. Some people prefer metal because of aesthetics. Gold or silver fillings are commonly used because they are more durable than composite fillings. The appearance may not be as pleasing as porcelain but metal fillings could last for 15 years or more.
- Glass Ionomer. For better results, specialists designed the glass ionomer. A dental filling that could release fluoride to protect the teeth after the treatment. But its disadvantage is that it’s less durable than other fillings and needs replacement every 5 years.
To ensure that your fillings stay durable and long-lasting, here are the aftercare pointers that you should remember:
- Chew and bite gently. Biting harshly can cause pain in your teeth after the treatment. If possible, bite with your other teeth and avoid using the treated teeth for a while.
- Avoid eating hard foods. Eating hard foods means that you’ll have to exert pressure using your teeth. Wait for a few days after the procedure before you eat your favorite peanut again.
- No to sticky foods. These are mainly the reason why you needed fillings in the first place. Sticky foods can dislodge your newly applied fillings so stay away from them in the meantime.
- Eat slowly. You might need to eat a little bit longer than usual as you must eat slowly as well.
- Stay away from foods with sugar. Sugary foods can cause sensitivity especially in the newly treated tooth, plus, they could bring in bacteria so as well.
- Avoid hot and cold beverages. Your tooth is still sensitive to hot and cold drinks so do not drink them for a day or two.
Taking care of your fillings is crucial as it may lead to infection and damages if not well cared for. Not following the dentist’s instructions could cause more damage. New damage means more procedure, and more procedure means more expenses. Remember that most dental procedures are not cheap so be sure to keep your teeth in their best state as much as you can. If you want to read about more options to correct your teeth check this post about the price of dental bonding.