Filling cavities is one of the most common treatments we perform at this Jacksonville, Florida dental practice. It is the best way to stop decay and prevent serious cases of decay from robbing us of our teeth. We find that the ubiquity of fillings results in their absence from dental discussions. Nearly everyone has had one at some point in their life, but nobody is ever motivated to talk about them. This week we’d like to tackle this exciting topic and discuss why fillings are one of a dentist’s best tools in the maintenance in oral wellness.
What Are Fillings?
Simply put a dental filling is a substance that is designed to fill a cavity. It prevents further decay and stops any other substances from irritating the nerve of the tooth, thus relieving sensitivity. There are several types of substances used to fill dental cavities. Dr. Shields chooses to only work with composite resin fillings, because they cause the patient no harm, are aesthetically pleasing, and are much more durable than other types of fillings.
How Are Fillings Applied?
When a cavity develops it is apparent to the patient because the tooth often becomes extremely sensitive. The first course of action should be to hightail it to your Jacksonville, Florida dentist. After an examination Dr. Shields will be able to decide how best to fill the cavity. After this important step she will begin work. After providing a local anesthetic to alleviate pain, she will remove all the decayed portion of the tooth. This void will then be filled with composite resin. This substance is bonded to the tooth with a special light. Fillings are extremely durable and last for a very long time. You do not have to worry about any mercury leaching into your system, nor the filling damaging your teeth or dislodging from the cavity – as you would with a traditional amalgam filling. Once the filling is bonded into place, you will instantly have relief from pain and may resume your normal daily activities.
Why Do Fillings Work?
Fillings are so effective because they act as a physical barrier between the outside world and your tooth. When you develop a cavity it is because the bacteria in your mouth has been stuck to your teeth in the form of plaque and tartar. This traps the bacteria and provides it with an ideal space to feast upon the sugars that enter your mouth in your food. When the bacteria is digesting this sugar it creates an acidic environment that slowly begins to erode the enamel of your tooth. Once the hardest portion of your tooth is gone, bacteria and acid begin to erode the dentin of your tooth and eventually get to the pulp of your tooth were your nerves are located. If not filled by your Jacksonville, Florida dentist, this decay can consume your entire tooth and necessitate a root canal, extraction, crown, and even the possibility of a dental implant. Fillings stop decay before it becomes a real problem because they are made of impenetrable materials that bacteria cannot erode. This stops the decay and prevents more from happening. Dental fillings are extremely effective at saving teeth, which is why they are a common treatment for dentists.
Dental fillings are great because they can stop a cavity from developing further. With composite resin technology they are stronger and more beautiful than ever. However,if you really want to protect your teeth and maintain your oral and overall wellness, you will work to prevent cavities from developing in the first place. The most effective way to prevent cavities is to adhere to beneficial oral hygiene routine. This includes brushing twice daily for two minutes at a time. This will ensure that no food is left on the surface of your teeth long enough to develop into plaque and eventually erode the enamel – causing a cavity. Adding precise flossing to this routine helps to remove any debris or bacteria from lingering between teeth. You should floss once each day to prevent any decay and periodontal disease. Finally the best way to prevent cavities is to make twice yearly appointments with your Jacksonville, Florida dentist. If you see her every six months, Dr. Shields will be able to detect a cavity before serious intervention is necessary. She will also be able to alert you to changes in your daily routine that can help you best prevent the development of cavities.