Cavities are incredibly common. A vast majority of people need at least one filling during their life. Even if you take good care of your teeth, cavities can still happen. Moreover, when one does develop, treatment is needed as soon as possible. Advanced Dental Associates can provide treatment for cavities with fillings.
Why Do I Need a Filling?
A filling is meant to treat a cavity. A cavity occurs when decay destroys a part of your tooth. Without treatment, bacteria can get stuck inside of the cavity. This can lead to more decay, causing the cavity to grow larger. This can compromise the tooth, leaving it susceptible to breaking or an infection.
Unfortunately, even if all of the decay is removed from the tooth, the cavity remains. This hole can cause many problems. A filling is meant to fill the cavity left behind by decay. It is designed to restore the tooth, protecting it as well as the health of your mouth.
What Types of Fillings are There?
The most common types of fillings are amalgam and composite resin. Amalgam is the most affordable. It is also one of the strongest. It is made from a mixture of different metals and is often recommended for treating cavities in back teeth. Amalgam fillings are also called silver fillings because of their color. While strong, the color can cause aesthetic concerns. Composite resin fillings, which are plastic material, are metal free. They are also tooth colored. Using a color guide, we can choose the right shade of composite to match your natural tooth color perfectly. These fillings are not nearly as strong as amalgam, but they are ideal for front teeth.
These are not the only types of fillings. There are also fillings that are made of gold, ceramic, and glass ionomer. These fillings, like amalgam, are incredibly strong. However, they can be more expensive. Ceramic fillings are a tooth-colored filling that is stronger than composite. Glass ionomer fillings are a good option for children. They do not last very long, which is fine for baby teeth because these teeth fall out eventually anyway. In addition to treating a cavity, these fillings also release fluoride, which helps to protect the tooth from new decay.
Are Fillings Permanent?
Fillings are meant to last a long time, but they are not necessarily a permanent treatment. Over time, your filling could begin to wear out. When this happens, it will need to be replaced. If you happen to notice cracking or wear around your filling, or if you notice that the filling itself has become damaged, it is important that you schedule an appointment as soon as possible. If you do not promptly address a worn-out filling, it could lead to serious issues, including new decay and infections.
Is There an Alternative to a Filling?
Fillings are the most common treatment for cavities. They are effective in numerous cases. However, there are some situations in which they may not be the best solution. Inlays and onlays provide an indirect alternative for certain types of fillings. In cases of significant decay, a crown may be necessary.
Treating a cavity with a filling is essential for restoring and protecting your tooth and your oral health. Call Advanced Dental Associates at (210) 714-5589 today to schedule your appointment.