Dental fillings are one of the most common general dental treatments we provide. They are something that most patients will experience at least once in their lifetime. Dental fillings play an important role in the long-term maintenance of a healthy smile.
What do dental fillings treat?
You can fix tooth decay or tooth damage in just one visit to our Philadelphia office with a dental filling. Treating tooth decay or damage promptly prevents tooth loss and other problems that arise from compromised oral health. Regular dental visits with Dr. Shulman provide the opportunity for our team to monitor the condition of your teeth and gums, spotting signs of decay or disease early in development.
Modern dental fillings made from composite resin protect teeth without the use of unsightly metals. White fillings blend in with teeth for a natural look that is also long-lasting. If you already have old metal fillings that are broken or need to be replaced, Dr. Drew Shulman can easily replace them with white fillings for an instant smile makeover.
Dental Fillings: What to Expect
Before conducting treatment, Dr. Shulman will assess the tooth or teeth that need the dental filling. To begin, an anesthetic will be used to numb the area that is being treated for patient comfort. Then the tooth will be cleaned and filled with tooth-colored biocomposite material. A special light will then cure the material. Once sealed, the tooth will be polished for the final restoration.
With the right dental care, a white dental filling will last for years to come. This procedure not only stops problems caused by tooth decay and tooth damage but improves oral health.
Inlays and Onlays
Sometimes, a dental filling isn’t enough to take care of a large area of tooth decay. But it may not be enough decay to warrant a full dental crown, either. Inlays and onlays can fill that gap between decay that can be taken care of with a filling and that decay that needs a dental crown.
Inlays are designed to go on the biting surface of the tooth but don’t impact the cusps of the tooth. It fills in the area between the cusps of your tooth. These are used when you need a little bit more stability and fortification than a traditional filling can provide. It helps restore the strength of your natural tooth.
Onlays are also sometimes called partial dental crowns because of the job they do. Not only do they fill in the biting surface, but they take care of the cusps as well. Onlays help you to preserve as much of your natural tooth structure as possible. Dental crowns require a lot of shaping and taking away a large portion of the tooth.
Dental Fillings FAQs
Are dental fillings painful?
Dental fillings themselves are not painful. Fillings relieve the pain in teeth and gums that are caused by cavities.
How do white fillings compare to metal fillings?
White fillings are made of a safe biocomposite material. Traditional metal fillings are made up of dental amalgam that may contain elemental mercury. Metal fillings last longer. You may want to replace your metal fillings with white fillings because the material is safer and blends in with natural teeth.
What causes tooth decay?
A cavity forms when the protective layer of enamel is compromised, possibly through damage or poor oral hygiene. Bacteria then reaches the inner layers of dentin, causing decay to form, which will continue to spread until the issue is treated.
How do I know if I need treatment?
In the early stages you may notice tooth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures. Later, a toothache that doesn’t subside may occur. If you experience any discomfort in your teeth then you should see your dentist for a diagnosis. Otherwise, the decay may eventually lead to an infection or abscess, which requires more invasive treatment options.
Do you offer tooth-colored fillings?
Yes. Instead of using metal we employ a composite resin. The material is metal-free and can be shaded to match the rest of the tooth. In addition, a tooth-colored filling won’t expand with time, reducing the risk of further decay or infection.
What if I need a crown?
In some cases the decay may be too advanced for a filling. However, we can remove the decay and place a dental crown. In fact, with CEREC technology we can now create and place a lifelike dental crown in a single visit. If you have any questions about treating cavities or our restoration options then please contact our office today.
Request A Dental Exam Near You Today
If you have concerns about the health or stability of your teeth or have damaged teeth, schedule a visit with Dr. Shulman. Call our Northeast Philadelphia dental office today at (215) 372-1142 for comfortable and convenient professional dental treatment.