Few of us will escape the need for a dental filling at some point during our lives. Fortunately, today’s fillings do not need to leave a dark mark on your smile because we use modern, tooth-coloured options to complement the natural appearance of your teeth.
Composite, or tooth-coloured, fillings are versatile and durable. Not only can we use them to fill in cavities after we remove decay, but we can also use composite to make small repairs with dental bonding.
How Does Decay Develop?
When we eat food and drink beverages, a residue remains on the surfaces of our teeth. When combined with bacteria, it becomes a biofilm and a haven for bacteria to reproduce. Bacteria cause an acidic by-product that softens the enamel layer that protects teeth. Once the acid dissolves enamel, a cavity forms.
Cavities are not curable and must be removed and filled to protect the tooth. Since most of us will develop a cavity during our lifetimes, tooth-coloured fillings are one of the most common restorative treatment procedures we perform in our Hornsby surgery.
Diagnosing Dental Decay
We strive to detect dental decay in its earliest stages by taking routine x-rays. While some decay is visible upon visual exam, the extent will not be clear without additional diagnostic information. We use digital x-rays, which provide high-resolution images with minimal exposure to radiation.
You can avoid decay by following good oral care habits including brushing your teeth twice daily, flossing daily and maintaining regular dental cleanings and exams.
How Tooth-Coloured Fillings Work
Cavities come in all sizes. Whether the cavity is big or small, we always make sure our patients feel completely comfortable during their procedure by completely numbing the tooth. Both Dr Ben Dunster and Dr Clint Hazell make this process as painless as possible with their gentle approach to dental care.
Next, Ben or Clint will gently remove the decay with precision instruments designed to leave behind healthy tooth structure. They will then eliminate all bacteria and diseased tooth structure and apply a bonding agent to the tooth.
After choosing a shade that matches your natural tooth colour, your dentist will apply the composite in layers and cure it with a light that hardens the material.
Once we fill the cavity completely, we will polish it to a shine and make any final adjustments to ensure your bite feels comfortable. You can chew on your filling right away, but be careful with anything hot or chewy while your mouth is still numb.
Is It Time for Your Next Dental Visit?
We are here to support healthy, comfortable smiles for you and your family. We always invite new patients and hope you will find that our friendly and professional approach to dentistry makes you feel welcome.