Dental filling by Irvine Dentist
A dental filling will be used to fill the hole in your teeth that is left from a cavity. To treat a cavity your dentist will remove the decayed portion of the tooth and then “fill” the area on the tooth where the decayed material once lived. Fillings are also used to repair cracked or broken teeth and teeth that have been worn down from misuse (such as from nail-biting or tooth grinding ).
About Cavities and Dental Decay:
A cavity (caused by a disease called caries) happens when bacteria in the mouth produce acids that attack your teeth. In time, this acid can dissolve away the enamel on your teeth and cause a hole, which is known as a cavity. Unlike some other diseases or injuries, a cavity will not heal by itself, but if the early signs of dental decay are promptly treated before a cavity forms, it can be stopped and even reversed by your dentist.
Without treatment by your dentist, dental decay may continue to advance. Extreme decay can result in the loss of the affected tooth or teeth, potentially preceded by great discomfort, infection and other health problems.
At the first part of the dental filling, the dentist will numb the area around the tooth to be filled with a local anesthetic. Next, a drill, air abrasion instrument, or laser will be used to remove the decayed area. The choice of instrument depends on the individual dentist’s comfort level, training, and investment in the particular piece of equipment as well as location and extent of the decay.
The easier second half of the dental filling procedure is filling the tooth. Materials for fillings differ. In the US, dental amalgam, and polymer resins are most common. Dental amalgam is made of mercury mixed with metal. Concern about placing mercury into the mouth has been a matter of some debate, since some mercury clearly leeches from the dental filling and is ingested.
This has led some dentists to prefer plastic polymers instead, and some parents to insist on children never receiving a dental filling that contains mercury. As yet, controversy over mercury present in dental amalgam has not subsided. Glass ionomer cements may also be used instead of dental amalgam.
Several additional steps are required for tooth-colored fillings and are as follows. After your dentist has removed the decay and cleaned the area, the tooth-colored material is applied in layers. Next, a special light that “cures” or hardens each layer is applied. When the multilayer process is completed, your dentist will shape the composite material to the desired result, trim off any excess material, and polish the final restoration.
Types of Filling Materials:
Today, several dental filling materials are available. Teeth can be filled with gold; porcelain; silver amalgam (which consists of mercury mixed with silver, tin, zinc, and copper); or tooth-colored, plastic and glass materials called composite resin fillings. The location and extent of the decay, cost of filling material, patients’ insurance coverage, and your dentist’s recommendation assist in determining the type of filling that will best address your needs.
On average, amalgam fillings are expected to last approximately 12 years, while composite fillings are expected to last five to seven years. This of course is dependent on your unique considerations, the care with which you treat your oral hygiene and your commitment to continued dental visits.
Dr. Hawary is both a Diplomate and a Fellow of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists (ICOI), the world’s top dental implants organization. We request you to visit Dentist in Irvine / Dentist In Huntington beach for any dental issues.
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