Posts for tag: fillings
Your Macon, GA dentist offers fillings that protect teeth and offer aesthetic benefits, as well.
If you’ve ever dealt with tooth decay, then chances are good that Dr. Clinton Watson and Dr. Nichole Jackson, your Macon, GA dentists at Northside Family Dentistry, placed a dental filling in your tooth. There are a variety of different kinds of fillings out there, and each one offers its own unique benefit for your smile. Composite resins have become a very popular dental filling as they offer both strength and aesthetics.
What are dental fillings?
Dental fillings are used to restore the decayed parts of a tooth. Getting a dental filling is usually the last step after your Macon dentist has removed the decaying portions of enamel and cleaned out the cavity. The filling material is then used to replace the cavity and help restore the shape of your tooth.
Why are dental fillings necessary?
It’s important that bacteria and decay aren’t able to break through tooth enamel. To prevent this from happening to your tooth again, Dr, Watson or Dr. Jackson will fill your tooth, which repairs and it seals out any further decay.
What are the different kinds of dental fillings?
There are several different kinds of dental fillings: gold, silver, composite and porcelain. While gold and silver fillings boast a long lifespan because of their strength and resilience, composite resin fillings have become the most popular dental filling because they actually match the color of your tooth.
How do you get a dental filling?
The patient is usually given local anesthesia before your Macon dentist drills away the decayed parts of enamel from your tooth. Once this is complete, they will begin to apply the composite filling in layers. After molding each layer, a laser is used to harden it before applying a new layer of resin. Your dentist will continue to mold and harden the resin until they have completely restored the damaged parts of your tooth.
A surefire way to make sure you’re not dealing with tooth decay is to see your Macon, GA dentist every six months for routine exams. If it’s time for you bi-annual cleaning, then it’s time to schedule an appointment with Dr. Clinton Watson and Dr. Nichole Jackson at Northside Family Dentistry.
Are tooth-colored fillings safer than silver fillings?
No. Both are considered safe based on the most reliable and up-to-date scientific evidence. Still, tooth-colored fillings do have some definite advantages. Not only do they blend in with your smile far better than “silver” (dental amalgam) fillings, but they often require less removal of healthy tooth structure. That’s because in order to fill a tooth with amalgam, it is necessary to create indentations in the tooth called “undercuts” to hold the amalgam in; this requires the removal of some healthy tooth material. With a tooth-colored filling, we need only remove the decayed part of the tooth to place the filling.
Are there any disadvantages?
Yes, tooth-colored fillings don’t always wear as well as metal fillings — particularly on back molars where they are subjected to the most stress from chewing. They are also more expensive and less likely to be fully reimbursed under dental insurance plans.
Are there different types of tooth-colored fillings?
Yes, three different choices of tooth-colored fillings are available:
- Composite — This mixture of plastic and glass is the most common type of tooth-colored filling. Newer materials can hold up almost as long as amalgam fillings and look very natural, though they can stain over time just as natural teeth do.
- Porcelain — High-tech dental ceramics are considered the most aesthetic choice of filling material. They don’t stain as composites can, but their relatively high glass content can make them more brittle and prone to breakage. They may be more expensive than composites.
- Glass Ionomer — Made of acrylic and glass powders, these inexpensive, translucent fillings blend in acceptably well with natural teeth and have the advantage of releasing small amounts of fluoride to help prevent decay. However, they generally don’t last as long as other restorative materials.
We would be happy to offer guidance on which choice would be best in your own unique situation.
If you have any questions about tooth-colored fillings, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The Natural Beauty of Tooth-Colored Fillings.”