How Dental Fillings Repair Damaged Teeth
When you need a dental filling, our Loveland dentist, Dr. Kreimer, will provide you with the best treatment options suited to your unique oral needs. You’ll experience the following when we start the dental fillings procedure:
- We’ll take an X-ray to see the extent of the damage.
- If the cavity has extended beyond your tooth’s enamel, we’ll apply a local anesthetic to numb the area for a pain-free, comfortable procedure.
- We’ll use a gentle drill to remove bacteria and decayed tooth matter from the inside of your tooth. We’ll also remove any part of the damaged enamel.
- We’ll apply your filling option onto the tooth to fill the cavity and replace the lost enamel.
- If you choose white fillings or resin inlay and onlay, we’ll use a special light to harden and permanently bond the restoration to your tooth. We’ll then polish and smoothen the edge to make it look natural.
- If you choose a silver filling, inlay and onlay, or white porcelain, we’ll place your restoration and bond it to your tooth.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do dental fillings last?
Amalgam fillings can last up to 12 years, and composite fillings can last up to eight years with proper oral hygiene. You’ll need a replacement when a filling becomes less stable and shows signs of failure.
Amalgam fillings can expand with age (which can crack the teeth), while composite fillings tend to leak (which can lead to secondary decay). The best way to ensure your filings are still effective is by visiting your dentist twice a year for regular checkups.
Can I replace my silver fillings with composite fillings?
In most cases, it’s possible to change silver fillings for new composite fillings. Ask your dentist to see if it’s possible to change fillings. Your dentist will examine your current fillings and determine if it’s the safest and most effective option to replace them with composite fillings.
How do I know if I have cavities?
Some signs and symptoms that you may be dealing with cavities include:
- Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
- Bad breath
- Bleeding, swollen gums
- Difficulty chewing
- Pain in tooth, jaw, or neck
If you’re experiencing one or more symptoms, schedule an appointment with your dentist to get it checked and treated as soon as possible.