Tooth decay is a significant concern that should not be ignored. If left untreated, it can pose a serious threat to your oral health, leading to pain and further complications. Fortunately, dental fillings are a common treatment used to restore teeth damaged by decay or cavities. They will allow you to enjoy a healthy and fully functioning smile once again! Not sure if you need this treatment? Read on to learn some of the most common signs that indicate you may need a filling. Additionally, you can learn more about the different types of fillings available to help you choose the best option for your smile.
What Signs Indicate You Need a Filling?
Sadly, dental decay does not have a lot of symptoms in the early stages. That’s why it’s incredibly important to know which symptoms indicate there’s a problem. Keep an eye out for the following signs:
If you experience sharp or sudden pain when consuming hot or cold foods or drinks, it could indicate tooth decay. Dental sensitivity occurs when the protective enamel layer wears down, exposing the underlying dentin. Luckily, fillings can help seal and protect the damaged area, reducing sensitivity.
A persistent toothache is another major indication that you may need a filling. If you’re experiencing a throbbing or continuous pain in your tooth, it is likely caused by decay or cavities. Dental fillings are designed to eliminate the decayed portion of the tooth, removing the source of the pain, and restoring the tooth’s function.
Visible Holes or Dark Spots
Examining your teeth regularly can provide valuable insight into your oral health. If you notice any visible holes, pits, or dark spots on the surface of your teeth, it may signify tooth decay. These spots are often the result of eroded tooth enamel. Dental fillings can be used to fill these cavities, preventing further decay, and restoring the tooth’s appearance.
Food Lodging in Crevices
If you frequently experience food getting stuck in the crevices or gaps between your teeth, you may need a filling. Decay weakens the tooth structure, making it more susceptible to trapping food particles. Dental fillings can seal these gaps to prevent the accumulation of bacteria, reducing the risk of further decay.
How to Choose the Right Type of Filling
Once it’s determined that you need a filling, you must consider the various types that are available. Your dentist will recommend the most suitable option based on factors such as the location and extent of decay, your oral health history, and your budget. The most common types of dental fillings include:
- Amalgam Fillings – These fillings are made from a blend of metals, including silver, tin, and copper. Amalgam fillings are durable and long-lasting, making them ideal for restoring molars and premolars that withstand significant chewing forces. However, it’s important to note that they are more noticeable due to their metallic appearance.
- Composite Fillings – Made from a blend of plastic and glass material, these fillings can be color-matched to your natural teeth, providing a discreet and aesthetically pleasing result. They’re versatile and can be used on any tooth, but they may not be as durable as amalgam fillings for large restorations.
About the Practice
Our team at Long Family Dental strives to provide nearby patients with skilled care, comfortable attention, and state-of-the-art dentistry. Whether you need a routine checkup or a dental filling, we’re ready to do everything we can to restore your smile. To make an appointment, visit our website or call our office today!