Dental Fillings & Restorative Dentistry

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filling_iconCorrecting Cavities with Restorative Dentistry

Restorative dentistry can provide patients with decayed teeth numerous benefits. The basic procedure involves removing the decayed portion of the tooth and then filling the cavity in the tooth with an appropriate filling material.

How Fillings Work

Before the restorative dentistry procedure begins, a local anesthetic is administered in order to numb the mouth and prevent any sensitivity or pain for the patient. After a measure of comfort is achieved, a special dental drill is used to remove the decayed portion from the tooth.  The entire procedure can take from 10 to 60 minutes to complete.

Types of Fillings

There are many different types of filling materials that can be used for restorative dentistry services . The type of material that is used can depend on the cavity’s location, the type of cavity involved, desired aesthetics and durability required. Cast gold is one type of filling that can be used that offers durability and a high degree of strength. The downside is that some patients feel it is unaesthetic. Tooth-colored composites are one of the most widely used types of filling materials.  Additionally, composites bond well to the structure of the tooth.  A light is used to harden or cure the composite filling. The filling can then be shaped and any excess removed. Finally, it will be polished so that it will appear the same as the surrounding tooth structure.

Whenever a significant portion of the tooth structure has been lost, indirect fillings may be used. In this option, an impression of the cavity may then be taken and restoration performed in the lab. During the the patient’s next visit, it will be fitted into the mouth. Two common types of indirect restorative dentistry include tooth-colored onlays and inlays.