If you are diligent about brushing and flossing your pearly whites every day, limiting sugary and starchy foods, and coming in for regular dental checkups and cleanings every six months, you are doing everything you can to ensure a healthy smile!
Even so, a tooth can still succumb to a cavity. Cavities, or dental caries, are holes in your tooth that grow bigger because of bacterial plaque that produces acid. This acid erodes the tooth enamel and the layer beneath it, the dentin. And when decay is removed by your dentist, the hole stays behind. Cavities can develop on the top of teeth (or biting surface), between the teeth and on the root surface of the teeth.
In order to restore the tooth back to normal function, we will fill the hole with a filling material. These come in a variety of materials–dental amalgam, cast gold, composite resin, and porcelain, etc. So what can you expect when you have a dental filling done to restore the tooth?
The Restoration Process
First, we will give you a local anesthetic to numb the area surrounding the tooth. Next, we will cut through the tooth enamel with a drill to get rid of any decay in the tissue. Once we remove the tooth decay, we will shape the space to be filled with the filling material. If we are applying a bonded filling, we will etch the tooth with acid gel to prepare the tooth for the filling. For other types of fillings, we might need to layer resin on the tooth, with a special “curing” light to harden and strengthen the material. Once the filling has been put in place we will finish the procedure by polishing your tooth.
If you are noticing pain when you chew, that a tooth is sensitive to hot and cold foods and beverages, or you have a toothache that isn’t getting better, you may have a cavity that is in need of a restorative filling. To have your tooth checked out by our caring dentist, Dr. Joshua Merrill, just reach out to our New London Complete Health Dentistry team in New London, Ohio at 419-929-1544 today!