What Can You Expect When Getting a Tooth Filling?
Getting a tooth filled is typically an easy and painless experience. First, the area surrounding the filling will be numbed. This ensures the process is comfortable for you as a patient. Next, the dentist will use an instrument to remove the decayed portion of the tooth. This area will be cleaned, and then the filling will be placed in your tooth.
Types of Tooth Fillings
There are several different types of tooth fillings you may receive. Be sure to ask your dentist which one is right for your unique needs.
- Amalgam Fillings. Amalgam is one of the most widely used materials for fillings. It has been used by dentists for more than a century. Amalgam is highly durable and most suitable for filling cavities in the back of the mouth.
- Composite Fillings. Composite fillings are best suited for cavities located near the front of your mouth, because of their natural, tooth-like appearance. Composite is a resin material that is best suited for mending small or midsize cavities.
- Ceramic Fillings. Ceramic fillings offer impressive durability and great aesthetics. Ceramic fillings are typically made of porcelain and are known to withstand stains and abrasion. This type of filling is ideal for larger cavities in visible areas of the mouth.
- Glass Ionomer Fillings. Glass ionomer is composed of acrylic and glass. Once in place, this type of filling releases fluoride into the mouth in order to prevent further decay. Glass ionomer fillings may need to be replaced after a few years and are typically suited for younger patients whose teeth are still developing.
- Metal Fillings. Gold or silver amalgam is also commonly used to fill cavities. Metal fillings are extremely durable and may last up to 15 years.
Depending on the location and severity of your cavity, your dentist will be able to make an informed recommendation on which type of filling is best.
Caring for Your Fillings
After receiving a filling, it’s crucial to continue taking care of your teeth. Some patients experience mild sensitivity to the affected area after receiving a filling. Be sure to ask your dentist for toothpaste, floss, or mouth rinse recommendations that are specially formulated for sensitive teeth and gums. Continue your normal oral care routine of brushing and flossing in order to keep your new filling, and surrounding teeth, healthy and strong.
Schedule an Appointment for Cavity Fillings
Getting a filling is nothing to be scared of. The team at Gilbert Dental Group is highly familiar with this routine procedure and will make the experience as relaxing as possible. Be sure to always follow your dentist’s guidelines and seek fillings for your cavities as soon as they are detected; it’s key to keeping your smile as healthy as possible.