What are Dental Fillings?
A filling is designed to replace a smaller or larger area of tooth that has become decayed. Tooth decay is typically caused by poor oral hygiene as well as a poor diet that is high in sugar. The plaque acids essentially attack the enamel of the tooth, eventually eating away inside the tooth as well. Once a cavity is found, the decay can be extracted from the tooth and a white composite filling put into place.
Why might Dental Fillings be necessary?
The reason a dental filling might be needed is because you have just one or multiple cavities. Unfortunately, smaller cavities often don't have any symptoms, so the only way to know that they are there is with an exam and x-rays. If you do have a cavity, it is best to have it filled as soon as possible. A cavity that goes untreated for a long period of time can eventually require a root canal or extraction of the tooth itself.
Who is a likely candidate for Fillings?
To first determine if you have a dental cavity, we will perform an exam using a dental instrument known as an explorer. The explorer scrapes across the tooth looking for soft or "sticky" areas that could signal a cavity. Another way for us to tell if you have a tooth cavity is with a dental x-ray. The x-ray reveals darker areas of a tooth where decay is currently present.
What occurs during the Dental Filling procedure?
The filling procedure will start with a local anesthetic. This is used to numb one area of the mouth to make the procedure more comfortable for you. We then remove the area of decay and prep the tiny hole for the new filling. Tooth-colored composite resin is then placed inside of this hole and smoothed out. We harden the filling with a special bright dental light. We will be able to place several fillings at the same appointment, so long as they are within the same localized spot within the mouth.
If you think you might need a filling, call our Tyler, TX practice today to talk with one of our friendly and highly trained staff members.