A filling is used to restore a tooth that has been damaged due to decay, damage, or misuse. Some conditions that could require a filling include:
- Cracked or broken teeth
- Worn-down teeth due to nail-biting, teeth-grinding, or opening things with your teeth.
Dr. Strandburg offers two types of fillings: metal fillings and tooth-colored fillings. Where the tooth is located in your mouth, as well as your filling preference, can determine which type of filling we use
- Composite fillings are more aesthetic, as they resemble your natural teeth. They are ideal for front teeth, but can be used on your back teeth as well.
- Porcelain fillings are strong and aesthetic as well, and they do not stain as easily as composite. They are more expensive than composite and require the use of a dental laboratory to fabricate the filling.
- Glass ionomer fillings are translucent and blend well with the natural tooth color. They also release small amounts of fluoride to help prevent tooth decay. They generally do not last as long as composite fillings.
- Amalgam fillings are stronger, more durable, and less expensive than composite fillings. They are usually used on teeth that can’t be seen when you smile.
- Cast gold fillings are extremely strong and long lasting. They are the most expensive fillings.
What to Expect
In order to restore your tooth with a filling, we perform several steps:
- Numb the area with a local anesthetic
- Carefully clean the cavity of bacteria and debris
- Put the filling into the prepared cavity
- Shape the filling to fit your bite
- For gold and porcelain fillings, an impression will be made and sent to a lab to fabricate. You will return to the office to have it cemented into place.
Depending on the damage to your tooth, these steps might change.
Avoid Cavities with Good Dental Hygiene
Sometimes cavities can’t be avoided, but you can take certain measures to protect the health of your teeth.
- Brush your teeth at least twice per day, or after every meal, using fluoride toothpaste
- Floss every day
- Limit the number of carbonated beverages and acidic foods/beverages
- Don’t eat too much sugar
- Drink lots of water
- Stop smoking and using smokeless tobacco
- Have regular exams at our office
One reason we take x-rays at our office is to see the decay between your teeth that can’t be seen with the naked eye. We take yearly x-rays during your cleanings & exam appointment.