Fillings are a common dental practice, and the team at South Austin Dental are experts in effective fillings that will last.
Tooth cavities are one of the most common dental issues, affecting between 60 and 90% of children and adults. The first manifestation of a tooth cavity is a small stain on the demineralized enamel on the surface of the tooth, often hidden from sight. This destructive process often spreads to the deeper, softer areas underneath the enamel (dentine).
Tooth cavities even attack the root of teeth, potentially leading to gum retraction. Our team will treat your cavities by removing damaged tissue and anatomically reconstructing the tooth through a dental filling.
What Are Fillings?
Fillings are a type of restorative treatment that is used to repair teeth fractures, cavities and damage to the surface of the tooth. Fillings are made from many different materials, each having its unique qualities, disadvantages and price points. Fillings can be made from amalgam, composite resins, ionomers, etc.
Amalgam fillings are the most accessible and durable fillings but have the disadvantage of not giving the tooth a natural look. They rarely produce allergic reactions and are considered biocompatible. Amalgam adheres well to the dental surface, and amalgam fillings have for a long time been the standard of care. More recently, however, they have become less used not only because of their unnatural color but also because they contain mercury.
Ionomers have a color that is close to the tooth’s natural color, chemically adhere to the tooth surface and release fluoride for a long time, strengthening tooth structure. Another advantage of ionomer fillings is that they can be applied in a wet environment. For this reason, they are used for the treatment of baby teeth and the treatment of deep cavities and cavities of the posterior teeth. Unfortunately, they are not very durable, often leading to secondary cavities, often because of micropores in which bacteria can thrive.
Other materials used in the treatment of tooth damage and tooth cavities are composite materials. Composite materials have evolved greatly over the past several years, and their properties are close to the natural properties of teeth. Thanks to their structure of microparticles and nanoparticles that adhere to dental structures, composite materials are currently considered the best filling material. They also have the advantage of not having micropores through which dental plaque can thrive. Unlike ionomer fillings, they thus have the advantage of not leading to the emergence of secondary cavities.
Aesthetically, modern composite materials have a large range of colors, specially designed to help fit various looks and patients. Composite fillings are durable and very similar to the natural aspect of teeth. Furthermore, composite materials can also release fluoride ions, ideal for the treatment of cavities in children and adolescents. Composite material fillings are thus the best option for the treatment of tooth damage today, having few disadvantages while being durable and aesthetically pleasing.
For more information about fillings, contact the professionals here at South Austin Dental at (512) 441-8922 today!