A dental filling is needed to repair a tooth that has been damaged by caries. It’s a restorative procedure that is also used to relieve the tooth of sensitivity as a result of enamel loss.
During a routine dental check-up, your dentist will be able to spot tooth decay and caries. Once detected, the decay will be removed and the teeth will be thoroughly cleaned. Then the dentist will fill the cavity with porcelain, amalgam, composite resin or gold to close off the bacteria’s access to the tooth and prevent it from decaying even more.
There have been concerns about the use of amalgam as fillings. The truth is, this material has been used for over 150 years and it’s one of the most studied dental material to date. It’s been proven safe and effective, and it’s also a durable and inexpensive option for those requiring dental filling.
The American Dental Association, along with other leading health agencies in the United States have declared dental amalgam as safe for use as filling material.
There are cases however when a dental filling can no longer fix the problem. When the tooth decay is severe, your dentist will recommend a dental crown. Other treatment options that may be recommended include a root canal, bridge or implant.
How to Prevent Dental Decay
To protect your teeth from decay, regular dental check-ups are a must. Your dentist can detect problems before they get worse and prevent you from having to pay for a more expensive procedure.
Aside from keeping your dental appointments, there are things you can do at home to prevent tooth decay:
- Use fluoride toothpaste when brushing your teeth at least twice a day.
- Floss once a day.
- Check with your dentist if you can get dental sealants.
- Avoid eating and drinking in between your main meals.
- If you need to eat, choose snacks that are sugar-free and nutritious.
- Eat a balanced diet.
- Ask your dentist about getting fluoride treatment.
If you have cavities, call our office for an appointment at (239) 939-7070 so we can remove the decayed material and place a filling on the affected tooth before it gets damaged even further.