Tooth fillings help preserve, strengthen, and restore natural teeth that have been affected by decay. After the decayed area is removed and the tooth is thoroughly cleaned, a special material is placed in the tooth to fill in the empty cavity caused by decay. The filling strengthens the tooth so normal biting and chewing functions can be restored. Dr. Robert Wilder and Dr. Kevin Speer, the skilled dentists at Wilder Dentistry in Spokane Valley, WA, can strengthen and restore teeth weakened by decay with tooth fillings.
Signs Fillings are Needed
Fillings are needed any time a tooth has been weakened by infection or decay. When sugars and bacteria in the mouth mix together, an acid is produced. This acid breaks down tooth enamel and leaves teeth vulnerable to infection and decay, which is how cavities can develop. Left untreated, infection or decay can spread throughout the tooth. If it travels to the pulpy center of the tooth and down into the canals of the root, root canal therapy might be needed. If the infection or decay is too advanced, an extraction might be the only option.
Fillings are a highly effective way to preserve teeth affected by cavities. Seeing one of the dentists at our office in Spokane Valley, WA right away can help you avoid root canal therapy or extraction. Some signs that your tooth is affected by decay and needs a filling include:
- Pain when biting into food
- Sensitivity to hot or cold items
- Sensitivity to sweets
- Visible holes in the tooth
- A persistent toothache
- Changes in the color of the tooth
Several types of tooth fillings are available, including metal fillings such as silver amalgam or gold. Traditionally, silver amalgam dental fillings have been used to strengthen and restore teeth with cavities. However, another type of filling has become increasingly popular. Tooth-colored fillings are not metal but are made of a composite of materials, such as plastic resin and powdered glass. One of the reasons these fillings have become so popular is that they are white and blend in with the natural tooth so they are completely discrete.
In addition to blending in, another benefit of tooth-colored fillings is that more of a tooth’s healthy structure can be preserved. Tooth-colored fillings require fewer undercuts, as compared to metal fillings, to help them stay securely in place so less drilling of the tooth is needed. That means that more of the natural tooth can remain intact while still removing all areas affected by decay.
Teeth affected by decay can be strengthened, preserved, and restored with dental fillings. If any of your teeth have developed signs of decay, schedule an appointment with Dr. Wilder or Dr. Speer, our experienced dentists, by calling Wilder Dentistry in Spokane, WA, at (509) 891-7770.