A dental filling is one of the most common ways to restore teeth that are in bad shape. They have been used for many years for patients of all ages. Because there are many different types of dental restorations, it can be difficult to know in what situation each is used. Keep reading to learn more about dental fillings.
What is a dental filling and when is it needed?
Below is a quick overview of dental fillings, including what they are and when they are needed. This information can be helpful to review when trying to determine what type of restoration is needed.
About dental fillings
A dental filling is a restoration involving the application of material into the cavity of a tooth. Dental fillings can be made of gold, porcelain, silver amalgam, plastic, or composite resin, depending on the patient's preference and needs.
The procedure is most commonly performed in a general dentistry setting. The dentist will start by removing decayed or damaged parts of the tooth with a dental drill. Then, quick cleaning of the tooth will take place to remove debris. To finish, the filling material of choice will be put directly into the tooth in order to seal it off from further damage.
When a dental filling is needed
Dental fillings are one of the most common restorations used in general dentistry. Patients of all ages will likely require a dental filling at one point or another throughout their lives. Outlined below are a few of the most common situations in which a dental filling is needed.
- When a tooth is infected, the result is often an empty cavity, which requires a dental filling to repair it
- If a tooth has a minor crack or chip in it, the dentist can place a filling to restore the structure of the tooth
- Some teeth have divots in them, which makes their surface uneven. A dental filling can even out the surface, thus making for an even smile and a better chewing experience
There may be other specific, patient-related uses for dental fillings, however, these can be identified during a consultation with a dentist.
Other things to know about dental fillings
Most people are curious as to whether or not a dental filling procedure will cause any discomfort or pain. The answer is yes and no. Some patients respond well to these procedures, where there is only slight discomfort, but others may experience some level of pain. General dentists usually provide a numbing agent, and some also offer laughing gas to ensure that the patient remains calm throughout the procedure.
Do you need a dental filling?
When looking for further information on dental fillings, it is best to consult directly with a general dentist who can provide specific details. Any questions or concerns can be addressed, and an evaluation can be done in order to determine if a dental filling is a sufficient restoration. Reach out today to learn more or to get started with an appointment.
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