A cavity is one of the most common tooth problems for people of all ages. If left untreated, a cavity can cause pain and infections that may lead to other problems, such as difficulty eating and speaking. That is why it is so important to make an appointment to have it treated and have a cavity filling.
At Abington Dental Associates, we specialize in cavity filling and want to make sure you have the most bright and healthy smile possible. That’s why we want to break down the procedure.
What causes cavities?
A cavity, or tooth decay, occurs when the structure of your tooth is damaged because of your enamel softening. This is caused by acids in your mouth that are created when sugar is broken down by plaque bacteria. If this structural damage is not treated, it could lead to a hole in your tooth.
Cavities are most commonly formed because of poor oral hygiene habits. Cavities occur when foods become trapped between teeth and are not properly removed when the teeth are brushed or flossed. Plaque needs to be regularly removed from your teeth as well.
Eating and drinking is one of the biggest roles in the formation of cavities. You must be careful to choose foods that won’t harm your teeth and also avoid foods that tend to stick to your teeth. After drinking milk or soda or eating foods like hard candy, caramel, taffy, sugary cereal, or dried fruit, you must be sure to brush and floss to get rid of any lingering pieces of food.
How we fill cavities
When you have a cavity, we would like to treat it and get you a cavity filling right away. The first step is usually for the dentist to numb the surrounding areas including your teeth, gums, and skin to avoid any discomfort. Then, we will drill out and remove the decay in the tooth and fill the hole.
Abington Dental Associates uses a composite filling material to repair any damage to your teeth. Where most amalgam fillings are silver, composite materials used for fillings are tooth-colored so it looks natural and just like your original teeth. The composite filling gives dentists the ability to repair cavities that are too small to use amalgam or other types of fillings.
We know how nerve-wracking any dental procedure is so we want your experience to be as seamless and comfortable as possible. Our team, Dr. Shivani Shirgavi, DMD, and Dr. Rebekah Collins, DMD, are here to answer your questions and treat any teeth problems.
How to take care of fillings
Now that you have your cavity filling, it is important to take care of it. Because your tooth already had some structural damage, you want to try adding some new products to your oral routine designed for sensitive teeth. Toothpaste and floss that are designed for sensitive teeth will help protect your teeth against any future decay and will not irritate the area around the cavity filling.
A cavity filling is designed to last for many years, but it can get worn down from years of chewing. Unfortunately, if you tend to grind your teeth, you may need the fillings replaced even sooner. By not fixing a worn dental filling, it can cause irritation and you could actually crack your tooth which can lead to additional expensive repairs.
Fillings can also be damaged if the mouth is struck while playing sports. This can cause the cavity filling to break, crack, or fall out. If this happens, you should visit your dentist immediately to have it replaced and avoid any discomfort or possible infection.
At Abington Dental Associates, we offer a wide range of services for all your dental needs. Visit our website to make an appointment at our Abington, MA, office.