Tooth decay is the result of bacteria in your mouth breaking down the enamel on your teeth. This can cause cavities, which are small holes in your teeth. If cavities are not treated, they can get larger and lead to more serious problems, such as infection and tooth loss. If you have a tooth that is decayed, you may need to get a composite filling. In this blog post, we will discuss what composite fillings are and how they are used in dentistry. We will also explain what to expect when having one placed and the steps involved in the process. Finally, we will discuss what to expect after the appointment and how to care for your new filling!
What is a Composite Filling?
A composite filling is a type of dental restoration that is used to repair teeth that have been damaged by cavities. They work best for filling-in small to medium cavities. It is made up of several different materials, including plastic and glass-like fibers. Composite fillings are often used because they have many benefits. These benefits include:
- the ability to be matched to the color of the teeth
- can be completed in only a single dental visit
- preserve more of the natural tooth structure
- strong and durable
The Steps Involved in Placing a Composite Filling
To start the procedure, your dentist will first use dental anesthetics to numb the treatment area. This ensures that you won’t feel anything during the procedure. Before a composite filling can be placed, the dentist will need to clean out the cavity. This involves removing all of the decay and bacteria from the tooth using a dental drill. Once the tooth is clean, the tooth will be dried and a bonding agent will be applied to roughen the enamel and help the filling adhere to the tooth. The filling material will then be placed into the cavity and shaped to fit the tooth. A light will be used to harden the filling material in layers. Anywhere from 1-3 layers of composite can be used depending on the size and shape of the cavity. Finally, the dentist will check to make sure the filling is in place and that there are no gaps.
What to Expect After Your Appointment
You may experience some sensitivity after your appointment, but this should go away within a few days once your tooth has adapted to the new filling. To care for your new composite filling, you should:
- Brush your teeth twice a day with a toothbrush and toothpaste
- Floss daily
- Visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings every six months
Composite fillings are strong and durable, but they can still chip or crack over time. If this happens, you will need to schedule an appointment with your dentist to have the filling repaired or replaced. With proper care, your composite filling can last for about 5-7 years.
In this blog post, we discussed composite fillings. Composite fillings are a great option for restoring teeth that have been damaged by cavities. We explained the steps involved in placing a filling and what to expect after your appointment. Finally, we discussed how to care for your new filling! If you have any questions or think you may need a composite filling, contact our office to make an appointment! Thanks for reading!
Dr. Gerald Sisko graduated from Ohio State University College of Dentistry in 1987. He is an active member of the American Dental Association, the Ohio Dental Association, and the Akron Dental Society where he is currently holding a council position. He has had the honor and distinction of being awarded “TOP DENTIST” in Akron and Cleveland as well as Northeast Ohio for the last several consecutive years.