Dental decay is one of the most common problems dentists deal with every day. If you are like most American adults, you probably have at least one filling.
In the past, the standard for tackling dental decay was a metal mixture—called amalgam—that was easily recognizable by its dark gray color. With today’s modern dentistry, however, tooth-colored fillings are available for new cavities and to replace old amalgam fillings you might still have in your mouth.
At Downtown Dental, we only use tooth-colored composite fillings. Give us a call to find out more!
The Steps Involved for Filling a Tooth
The procedure for getting a tooth-colored filling is not much different than getting an amalgam.
Dr. Richard Rathke will first numb the area that will be treated so you won’t feel any pain during the procedure. Then he will remove the decayed portion of the tooth. Because the composite material bonds directly to your tooth, he will not have to remove as much of the tooth as with amalgam fillings.
Once the decayed area is clear and the tooth is ready for the filling, the composite material will be layered onto the tooth. Dr. Rathke will have you bite down on the filling to make sure it is comfortable, making any needed adjustments. Because Dr. Rathke will choose the right color to match your tooth, you won’t even be able to see the filling once it is in.
The Advantages of Composite Fillings
The most apparent advantage of composite fillings is that they are made to match your tooth color for seamless restorations. Even if you open your mouth wide to laugh or talk, no one will be able to see that you have fillings.
This also makes them ideal for treating decay near the front of your mouth, where fillings might be visible. Other cosmetic uses for composite fillings include repairing chips, gaps, or cracks in teeth.
In addition to the esthetic advantages, composite fillings are stronger and more durable than their amalgam counterparts. There is reduced expansion and contraction with composites, making them less likely to fracture over time.
Getting a composite filling is also quicker because your dentist will not have to remove as much of the tooth structure before placing the filling.
Taking Care of Tooth-Colored Fillings
There are no special instructions when it comes to caring for your composite fillings; brush and floss your teeth as you normally would. As always, stay current with your bi-annual visits to the dentist for checkups and cleanings.
If you notice any sensitivity with your tooth-colored filling in the weeks after the procedure, this will usually resolve itself on its own. Give us a call if it doesn’t.
Call Us to Ask about Tooth-Colored Fillings
If you have a cavity and need to get a filling or you have old amalgam fillings you’d like to replace, contact Dr. Rathke of Downtown Dental to find out more information on tooth-colored fillings. We look forward to seeing you!