A filling is a dental procedure that repairs a cavity in your tooth.
There are 3 ways of knowing if your tooth has a cavity:
- You may notice some pain or sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet foods or drinks
- Your dentist may diagnose it based on a clinical exam. When it is visible, it usually presents in one of three ways: a black spot, a brown spot, or a shadowy halo. When it is not visible, your dentist will diagnose the cavity by touching your tooth with an instrument to find any soft spots. Your tooth is somewhat like an apple – when it is in good condition, it is firm, and any parts that are going bad have soft or mushy spots.
- Your dentist may diagnose it based on a dental x-ray
A tooth cavity is fixed with a filling. The process of having a filling done is as follows:
- Numbing your tooth. Dr. Yaseen always starts with a topical gel on your gums to make the gums numb first so that the process of getting the anesthetic is more comfortable.
- Removing the cavity with a dental drill. Once we are sure that you are numb, Dr. Yaseen gently drills away the parts of the tooth that are no longer healthy.
- Placing the filling. Once the cavity has been removed from the tooth, it is prepared for the filling with a cleanser. Then “filling glue” is applied to the tooth and activated with an LED light. The filling material is then placed into the tooth. It is dispensed as a paste and is shaped into the desired position and contours. When it is activated by the LED light, it hardens into a solid substance that is durable enough for you to chew on for many years.
- The filling is polished smooth and adjusted so that your bite feels even.
The benefits of a filling are:
- Relief of discomfort caused by a cavity
- Preventing the cavity from progressing further. If left untreated, cavities can cause root canals or even extractions, so it is important to get them treated in a timely manner.
If you think you may need a filling, call us or schedule online for an evaluation.