A dental filling is a restorative material used to repair teeth affected by tooth decay or damage. At Sunrise Dental of Federal Way, we use dental fillings to restore the tooth's form, function, and integrity by filling in the area where the decayed or damaged tooth structure has been removed from.
Fillings help prevent further decay, restore the tooth's natural shape, and support biting and chewing. They are typically made from amalgam, composite resin, ceramic, or gold. The choice of filling material depends on factors such as the location of the tooth, the extent of the decay or damage, and the patient's preferences.
The Process of Getting a Dental Filling
The dentist will administer a local anesthetic to numb the area around the tooth being treated. This ensures a comfortable and pain-free procedure. The dentist will use a dental drill or other instruments to remove the decayed portion of the tooth. The area is then thoroughly cleaned to remove any remaining debris or bacteria.
Once the tooth is prepared, the filling material is placed in layers and shaped to match the natural contours of the tooth. The dentist in Federal Way, WA will use various techniques to ensure a proper fit and bite alignment. A special curing light hardens the material for certain fillings, such as composite resin. After the filling is set, it is polished to smooth out any rough edges and provide a natural appearance.
Types of Dental Fillings
The fillings are made from a mixture of metals, including silver, tin, copper, and mercury. Amalgam fillings are durable and have been used for many years. However, their silver color makes them more noticeable in the mouth.
Composite Resin Fillings
Also known as tooth-colored fillings, these fillings are made from composite resin, which is a mixture of plastic and glass particles. These fillings can be closely matched to the color of your natural teeth, providing a more aesthetically pleasing result.
Ceramic or Porcelain Fillings
These are custom-made fillings created in a dental laboratory and bonded to the tooth. Ceramic or porcelain fillings provide excellent aesthetics and are stain-resistant.
Gold fillings are made from a gold alloy. They are highly durable and long-lasting, but they are more expensive and may require multiple visits to the dentist.
Benefits of Dental Fillings
- Fillings restore the patient’s ability to bite, chew, and speak properly.
- By filling the cavities or repairing the damage, fillings help prevent further decay and deterioration of the tooth.
- Fillings allow for preserving as much healthy tooth structure as possible, minimizing the need for more extensive treatments like dental crowns or extractions.
- Getting a dental filling is a relatively quick and straightforward procedure that can often be completed in a single dental visit.
Regular dental check-ups and proper oral hygiene practices, including brushing and flossing, are essential for maintaining the longevity and effectiveness of dental fillings. For the best dental care personalized for your particular needs, visit Sunrise Dental of Federal Way at 33600 6th Ave S #102, Federal Way, WA 98003, or call (253) 838-3232.