Dental filling is a treatment technique to restore your missing tooth structure which could have been caused by decay or trauma. The tooth becomes hollow due to decay. In such a scenario, fillings help to fill this gap and protect it from further decay.
The filling repairs cracked or broken teeth as well as the teeth which wear off with time due to dental habits like teeth grinding and nail biting.
The process of dental fillings in dubai is simple and straightforward that can be done right at your dental clinic. While treating a tooth cavity, your dentist will remove the decayed portion of your affected tooth and fill up the area with the filling material.
What to Expect during Dental Fillings
You can expect to be at your dental clinic for an hour or so. In this period, your dentist will have sufficient time to take the X-ray of the affected area, discuss with you about the procedure and complete the dental work.
Before proceeding with filling the cavities, your dentist will numb your teeth, gums and surrounding area to reduce the pain and discomfort during the procedure. Once the numbness sets in, the dentist will drill the decay out of the tooth and replace it with a tooth colored filling.
Once the procedure is completed, your mouth will probably remain numb for a few more hours. Although, there are no risks associated with filling cavities, it is always advisable to keep your dentist’s contact information in case there are any complications or queries.
What Steps Are Involved in Filling a Tooth?
To begin with, the dentist will give local anesthetic to numb the area around your affected tooth. Once numbness sets in, he will proceed with the extraction of the decayed area. Your dentist will use a drill, air abrasion instrument, or laser depending on his experience as well as the location and extent of decay.
He will then create the space for the filling by cleaning the cavity of bacteria and debris. If the location of the decay is near the root, a liner made of composite resin, glass ionomer, or other material is first put so as to protect the nerve.
On completion of decay removal and cleaning of the area, your dentist will proceed with the application of the tooth-colored material in layers, and a special light is applied to harden each layer. On completion of the multilayering process, your dentist will shape the composite material to the desired result. Your dentist will trim off the excess material and polish the final restoration.
Choosing the Right Type of Dental Fillings
The most common use of tooth fillings is to fill your cavity in the tooth. But tooth fillings have other uses. They are used to repair damaged teeth caused by teeth grinding or bruxism. Tooth fillings are also used to fill a broken tooth. Many options are available in the market for tooth fillings, and all of them have their pros and cons.
Today, different kinds of filling materials are available. Your teeth can be filled with gold, silver amalgam, porcelain, or tooth-colored composite material, and a special type of glass.
The best tooth fillings for you will solely depend on cost, your aesthetic preferences and what your insurance may cover.
A wide variety of dental materials are used to fill teeth cavities and they vary in strength and color. Two of the most common types are amalgam and composite.
1. Silver Amalgam Fillings
Amalgam fillings are the most widely known type of filling. The material has been used by dental professionals for more than a century. In fact, it is the most researched material used for filling cavities.
Silver amalgam is not just pure silver. It is a mixture of minerals that contains 50 percent metals like silver, tin, zinc, and copper, and 50 percent mercury.
Silver amalgam is a popular choice for fillings among dentists because it’s durable, strong, and is not expensive. Hence your dentist uses this kind of filling to fill cavities in the back of the mouth. Such as in the molars. Molars are where your chewing takes place.
Since amalgam fillings are made of a combination of several metallic elements, they are visible when you smile or laugh. These fillings are among the least expensive of all cavity-filling materials.
Your tooth filled with silver amalgam filling can last you more than twelve years. Silver amalgam also is pretty easy for your dentist to fit into a cavity. Moreover, there are no concerns that it might become contaminated by saliva and blood.
As it is aesthetically not pleasing, hence it is not a good choice for those teeth which are visible.
2. Composite Fillings
These are often referred to as composites or filled resins. These fillings are made of glass or quartz filler and can be made to match the color of your existing tooth. This filing is placed into the cavity of your teeth while it’s soft, which then hardens with bright blue “curing” light.
Composite fillings are fairly durable and are ideal for small-to-mid-size restorations in areas of your mouth that perform moderate chewing.
Remember composite fillings don’t last as long as some other types. You might need to replace them every five to 10 years.
3. Gold Fillings
Gold is the most common metal used for a cavity filling. They are expensive and can cost you ten times more than silver amalgam fillings.
Many of us prefer the appearance of gold to silver fillings if they want a durable metal.
Another thing to note is that it takes more than one office visit to fit a gold filling properly in your cavity.
However, gold is sturdy, it will not corrode, and a gold filling can last you for more than 20 years before they need to be replaced.
4. Ceramic Dental Fillings
A ceramic cavity filling usually made of porcelain is both durable and aesthetically attractive. It is used to fill parts of the tooth.
As this filling is tooth-colored and more resistant to staining and abrasion – it may be less likely to show tooth stains over time compared to a composite cavity filling.
But price is a factor, a ceramic filling can be as expensive as a gold cavity filling. However this material can last more than 15 years or even more.
The disadvantage of using ceramic instead of a composite – is that the material is more brittle and hence needs to be used in larger quantities to prevent it from breaking.
This means the area around your tooth will be made larger so there’s room for the extra bulk. These ceramic restorations are typically referred to as inlays or onlays.
5. Glass Ionomer Dental Fillings
This blend of acrylic and glass is used to create a cavity filling which releases fluoride to help protect teeth from further decay. The main disadvantage of a glass ionomer cavity filling is that it’s less durable than other types, and it may require replacement once in every five years.
Glass ionomer Is most commonly used for fillings below the gum line and for fillings in young children. The material is weaker than composite resin. It is more prone to fracture as well as susceptible to wear.
Taking Care of Dental Cavity Fillings
When you receive fillings, you may get a discomfiture in the form of pain and sensitivity, which will subside. Thereafter, you need to follow the following steps.
a. Good Oral Hygiene
In order to maintain dental cavity fillings, it is imperative that you should follow good oral hygiene.
This includes brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing and using an antibacterial mouthwash at least once on a daily basis.
You can use the toothpaste and floss which are designed to protect sensitive teeth. You must use special floss for sensitive gums which should not irritate the area around tooth fillings. Besides, you must visit your dentist regularly for cleanings.
b. Regular Dental Visits
During these visits, your dentist will check whether your filling is cracked or there is a leakage. The leakage occurs when the sides of the filling do not fit tightly against the tooth thereby allowing the saliva and debris to come down between filling and the tooth.
Your leakage accentuates decay. The leakage is detected by taking X-rays. You need to call your dentist , if you feel a sharp edge or notice a crack in the filling, or feel that piece of the filling is missing.
When to Replace a Cavity Filling
Normally, the teeth fillings last for many years before they need to be replaced. Over a period of time, the tooth fillings can wear out due to years of chewing.
If you grind your teeth, you may need to have tooth fillings replaced sooner. Also if you notice signs of wear like cracks or worn areas on your tooth fillings, you need to visit your dentist to have the filling replaced at the earliest.
If you continue to chew with a damaged filling, the tooth may crack. This would require additional repair which is more complicated as well as expensive than a simple cavity filling.
If additional tooth decay develops around your filled teeth, your dentist may have to repair the tooth with a crown instead of doing a second round of cavity filling.
Potential Problems with Cavity Fillings
It is imperative to know and understand about your teeth fillings and the potential problems associated with it. This will help you in the long run, to plan, schedule your dental appointments, so you can get your dental cavity fillings adjusted or repaired. If you don’t take care of the dental cavity fillings , it can lead to potential complications which may include infection and damage.
Over a period of time, there is a tendency for cavity filling to break from the tooth to which it is attached. This creates a small space, which can become a breeding ground for bacteria thereby causing further tooth decay. Hence, if you notice a gap between your tooth and your cavity filling, you must visit the dentist immediately.
In few cases, damage to a filling can occur, if you bite something hard or you encounter an injury. The damage can be in the form of cracking or breakage of cavity filling. In such a scenario, you must visit your dentist to avoid the irritation and contracting infection of the unprotected tooth.
It is important to evaluate the effect of the type of filling material on deformation and strength of tooth after filling and also the effect of filling depth on quality of restoration of a decayed tooth. The longevity of your filling will depend upon the material of the filling. It will also depend on how well you can take care of your filling.
Why Choose REPC?
REPC is one of the premium medical centers in Dubai which offers the best treatment options for fillings using the latest equipment.
Moreover, we strive to deliver highly advanced services together with our highly trained team of expert professionals in the field of dentistry.
To know more about the quality of our services as well as well as treatment options, do check our dentistry blogs covering: