If our Lumberton, NC, dentist Dr. Colin Osborne, III detected a cavity during your dental cleaning it’s important that you get the problem addressed as soon as possible to prevent the decay from spreading. Of course, once the decay has been removed it’s important to rebuild and restore the tooth. The best way to do this is often with a dental filling.
What is a dental filling?
A dental filling is a special material that is applied to decayed areas of a tooth that have been removed The purpose of a filling is both cosmetic and restorative. For one, after some tooth enamel has been removed it can leave the tooth weaker than before the decay. In this case, placing a dental filling can re-strengthen the tooth. Furthermore, a dental filling can also improve a tooth’s appearance.
What is a dental filling made from?
In the past, fillings could be made from a variety of material; however, nowadays composite resin or tooth-colored fillings are most often placed by our Lumberton, NC, family dentist. Not only is composite resin very durable, which means that it can withstand the powerful pressure of the jaws when chewing or biting down, it also looks just like tooth enamel.
Composite resin is a tooth-colored, moldable material that when applied, shaped and hardened over areas of the tooth immediately blend right in. You won’t be able to tell where the dental filling is and no one will notice it either. As you might imagine, the cosmetic benefits of composite resin fillings are superior to other filling options.
How is a dental filling placed?
Once the decay has been removed it’s now time to place the filling. Composite resin is putty-like, which makes it easy to mold. A thin layer is placed over the treated areas of the tooth and then shaped and trimmed before being hardened into place with a special light. Once the first layer has been hardened your dentist will continue to apply additional layers until the tooth is completely filled. With the proper care, a dental filling can last up to eight years or longer without needing to be replaced.
When was the last time you had a dental cleaning in Lumberton, NC? If it’s been more than six months then it’s time to call our dental practice to schedule your next routine checkup. Safeguard your smile from cavities.