Fillings are restorations that are done to repair damage caused by tooth decay. Tooth decay occurs when microorganisms in the mouth convert sugar from food to acid, which attacks the tooth. The acid forms cavities that start in the hard outer surface of the tooth (the enamel) and may extend inward to the pulp, which contains the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels. Left untreated, tooth decay may lead to inflammation and infection that may cause toothache and perhaps more serious complications.
To stop the decay process, the dentist removes the decayed portion of the tooth using a high-speed drill, shapes the cavity walls, and replaces the tooth structure with a filling of next generation composite resin. The filling is placed in the cavity as a liquid or soft solid. It sets within seconds after a dental curing light is held over the filling material. This procedure is done under a local anesthetic.
Silver amalgam fillings and first generation resin composite fillings are no longer used due to some alarming weaknesses inherent in these materials. Silver amalgam fillings do not seal off the tooth from outside saliva or bacteria. This causes leaking around the filling’s margin and eventual recurrent decay. Leaking silver fillings can also lead to cracked, broken teeth that can only be repaired with more extensive dental restorations. Silver amalgam fillings also contain mercury. First generation composites would not hold up very well to the chewing forces of the back teeth. They would stain easily and need to be replace every couple of years due to lack of strength.
Today’s fillings are made of a much stronger and longer lasting material than was used even a few short years ago. They are infused with a porcelain like base in a resin composite matrix. The Doctors at Surprise Dental and Denture only use the most up to date and advanced filling materials available in dentistry at this time.
This next generation filling materials advantages are as follows:
* A direct bond with the tooth structure reducing leakage.
* Visually pleasing due to the wide range of tooth color options available.
* Stronger than previous resins that were out even only 5 years ago.