Repairing Decay, Defects and Hypersensitivity with Teeth Fillings
Dentists use the term Operative Dentistry to mean ‘Teeth Fillings’ or ‘Teeth Repairs.’ If you have a cavity or a tooth defect, or if you have lost enamel or have tooth sensitivity, then this site will give you the information you need.
What Options Do I Have for Teeth Fillings?
We offer two types of fillings for fixing cavities and tooth defects: (1) tooth colored fillings (composite fillings or resin fillings) and (2) special fluoride-releasing fillings.
Are Teeth Fillings Invisible?
The days of dark metal fillings have disappeared. Today our office has many lifelike tooth colored materials that we can use for teeth fillings. Tooth colored fillings, also called white composite resin fillings, are a great choice to replace decayed and infected tooth structure to keep teeth healthy.
Can Teeth Fillings Repair Teeth and Make Them Stronger?
Yes! At times, we recommend fluoride-releasing teeth fillings as an excellent way to treat cavities while strengthening teeth. Some patients have a history of frequent cavities. And some patients have a high risk of cavities due to age, diet or a compromised immune system. In these cases, fluoride-releasing teeth fillings help prevent future cavities while providing extra strength to vulnerable teeth.
These fillings are still white, tooth-colored fillings. However, the material is particularly designed to provide a fluoride boost to the surrounding tooth. Fluoride releasing fillings have the added benefit of reducing sensitivity because they both cover and seal the pores of the tooth.
Do Fillings Save You Money?
Would you like to save money—especially on dental work? You can do this by allowing your dentist to repair cavities when they are still small. Don’t do the ‘wait and see’ method when it comes to cavities. Why? Because small teeth fillings are less work, less expensive, and less dangerous. When we removing decay and fill the tooth this stops the cavity from spreading. By stopping the growth of the cavity, we prevent it from infecting the nerve and causing a major toothache.
Extra-Strong Fillings – An Option Only A Few Know About
Have you ever heard of inlays and onlays? Most people haven’t! Inlays and Onlays are special, extra strong teeth fillings made from the same stuff as crowns and bridges. These fillings are made to last!
Inlays go inside the tooth where cavities used to be. Onlays go on the top of the tooth when cavities are extra large. Both prove extremely strong and completely resistant to stain and color changes.
The inlays and onlays get made in a dental laboratory and then a dentist bonds them to the teeth. Their structure and the process of bonding them to teeth makes them stronger than regular teeth fillings.
Unfortunately, dental insurance does not cover the cost of inlays and onlays. Insurance companies consider them a PREMIUM service for repairing cavities. They cost more than regular fillings because they are made in a lab with superior crown materials.
Once, I used an onlay for a young lady born with a defect in her back teeth. Her defect allowed cavities to form more quickly than normal. In her case, fixing the void in a way that would last as long as possible meant using a porcelain onlay. Though it cost the same as a crown, the onlay fixed the defect and preserved more of the tooth structure, which was what mattered most to her parents.
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Sensitive teeth can make you miserable. They give shocks of pain when least expected, zing when you eat candy, and sting when you pick out popcorn kernels. Teeth with sensitivity also ache from hot coffee and twinge with cold ice. They even hurt just from breathing! Ughhh!
Sensitivity usually happens when the inside of the tooth becomes exposed. In healthy teeth, the inner layers of dentin have protection from hard, white enamel. Gum tissue also helps to shield teeth from danger. With either enamel erosion or gum recession, these inner, more sensitive parts of the tooth get exposed to air and start the uncomfortable cycle of sensitivity.
Fortunately, there are several Teeth Filling Options to treat sensitive teeth:
- Fluoride Varnish: This varnish binds to your teeth where they hurt. It temporarily seals off the open pores of dentin and cementum that cause sensitivity. Varnish is the least expensive way to treat sensitivity. It also has the additional benefit of strengthening teeth and preventing cavities. However, it gradually wears off and needs reapplication every 3-4 months for continual relief.
- Composite Bonding: Bonding provides long term relief for sensitive teeth by covering the spots of exposed underlayers of the tooth with protective, tooth-like composite material. Composite bonding repairs a tooth and provides sensitivity relief for several years instead of several months.
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