Fillings – Bountiful Dental
Fillings are artificial replacements for tooth structure that is decayed or missing. They can be needed for a variety of reasons including when the tooth is decayed through the enamel to the dentin layer, to repair chips, replace stained pits and grooves, and to restore worn teeth. To learn more about how decay is formed, read about it on our blog post. The smaller a filling is, the longer it can last. Therefore it is important to come in for a check-up every six months so we can catch any decay early and before it causes you pain. If the decay is extensive, a crown may be needed to restore the tooth instead. If the cavity reaches your nerve chamber, a root canal is needed before restoring the tooth. We place composite (white) fillings, though in certain situations an amalgam (silver) filling is needed. We can also replace your silver fillings for cosmetic reasons if you’d like.
What to expect during a filling appointment:
With most fillings, local anesthesia is needed to help you feel comfortable during your appointment. The decay is then cleaned out completely. The filling is placed in the space left by the decay and shaped so your tooth will look and feel natural. With white, or composite, fillings, an etching material is used after the decay is removed to prep the tooth surface for the filling. A bond is then rubbed on the cleaned surface, and the composite material is packed into the space and bonds with the tooth. With an amalgam filling, no bonding is needed. The material will also be packed into the space but it expands slightly to hold itself in. Once the filling material is completely cured, you can treat it like a normal tooth, brushing and flossing around it as usual.