Even with daily brushing, flossing, and routine visits to the dentist, sometimes people will still develop a cavity. If allowed to progress too far, cavities can develop into very serious dental problems and compromise oral health. However, when caught early there is a simple and highly effective solution: fillings.
What Are Dental Fillings?
As the name implies, the process of performing dental fillings quite literally involves filling the tooth cavity with an artificial substance. This serves to protect the tooth from further damage and also restores function and appearance. There are an assortment of different materials that may be used for dental fillings.
Materials Used for Dental Fillings
- Dental Composites
- Glass Ionomer Cement
- Dental Amalgam
There are pros and cons to each of the above materials used for dental fillings. For example dental composites have the advantage of being affordable, can be made tooth colored, and can be easily and effectively applied to the tooth. However, they typically have a shorter lifespan than metals or porcelain. Meanwhile, many patients may appreciate the aesthetics and longevity of gold, but it is quite expensive and more difficult to work with. Similarly porcelain is durable and can be made to effectively mimic natural enamel in terms of color and function, yet may be too brittle and not appropriate for all teeth.
Different dentists will also offer different types of dental fillings and may not work with all types. It is important to discuss the pros and cons of dental filling material with your dentist, to listen carefully to any recommendations, and to ask questions if you are unsure of something. Lastly, it is important to be aware that dental fillings are not permanent. Depending on the type of filling, the care it receives, and individual circumstances you can expect fillings to last roughly about seven to thirteen years.
The Benefits of Dental Fillings
Dental fillings are an excellent first line of defense to protect teeth from further harm and to restore proper function and appearance. By contrast if the tooth decay is not caught early enough a more extensive and expensive procedure, such as dental crowns, root canal therapy, or dental bridges, may be required.
Dental Fillings and Weaver-Jaynes DDS
Weaver-Jaynes DDS is committed to helping our patients achieve and maintain outstanding oral health. Dental fillings are an excellent resource in that pursuit and our patients can rest easy knowing that we will do everything we can to ensure that the procedure is not only effective, but also as comfortable and anxiety free as possible.