Tooth Filling Simi Valley, CA
What Are Dental Tooth Fillings?
Dental tooth fillings are a restorative treatment in Simi Valley, CA, used to improve the appearance and functionality of teeth affected by damage or decay. The filling materials, which can be made from several different substances, help to even out tooth surfaces for more efficient biting and chewing. Dental fillings can last for many years and help keep the tooth looking and functioning at its best.
What Types Of Dental Filling’s are there?
Composite fillings are made of a glass or quartz filler within a resin medium that produces a tooth-colored material. Also known as filled resins, composites are often used in small to mid-size restorations, as they provide strength, durability and resistance to fracture. In addition, the shade of composite fillings is made to closely match the patient’s actual teeth, so that other people will not be aware that dental work has been done.
Glass ionomers are also tooth-colored fillings that are made of a mixture of acrylic and glass, and are most often used in young children, because they release fluoride. This material is weaker than composites and usually lasts less than five years before a replacement is needed.
Amalgam fillings have been used for many years and are considered strong, durable and relatively inexpensive compared to other materials. Although strong and effective, many patients do not choose to use amalgam fillings because the silver color can be visible while eating, speaking or smiling.
How long does it take for teeth fillings to settle?
How long it takes for your filling to settle will depend on the kind of filling you choose. Tooth-colored composite and glass ionomer fillings cure immediately after placement. Amalgam fillings take about 24 hours to fully harden into their strongest form. For this reason, the dentist may recommend chewing on the other side of the mouth for a day after getting an amalgam filling.
Do fillings ruin your teeth?
No. Dental fillings are set into the indentation made by a cavity. The material fills the gap created by the erosion of natural enamel. Amalgam fillings are mechanically stabilized, meaning that the dentist creates a specific shape to hold the material in place once it hardens. Composite and glass ionomer fillings are bonded to teeth and hardened to withstand the force of chewing. Regardless of which filling you choose, the benefit of repairing the cavity is that strength is restored to the tooth. Fillings do not make teeth weaker, they make them stronger.
How long should you keep a filling in?
Dental fillings are made to last several years. Amalgam fillings are known to last for 15 years or longer. Composites and glass ionomers last an average of seven years, those these, too, may last much longer. Once you have a filling, you will always need one. If your filling wears down or is fractured, your dentist will need to replace it to ensure the tooth does not sustain further damage or decay. To help your fillings last as long as possible, it is important to continue taking very good care of your teeth. Brush twice a day and floss once every day to prevent the buildup of debris and plaque on teeth, the gums, or fillings. At your routine dental checkups, your dentist will carefully examine your fillings to ensure that the margins around the restoration are intact and there is no space between the filling and the tooth. They also check for cracks or other signs of damage. With good care and oral habits, we expect fillings to perform well for several years.
How many times can a dental filling be replaced?
Dental fillings can be replaced as many times as is needed to maintain the tooth’s strength. The caveat to filling replacement with another filling is that there must be sufficient tooth structure to support this restoration. If the area of damage is large and the filling would make up most of the tooth (there is more filling material than natural tooth material), an alternative restoration would need to be considered. Depending on the size and area affected, or the presence of multiple fillings in a single tooth, the dentist may recommend an inlay, onlay, or dental crown to adequately protect the tooth.
Are Tooth-colored fillings painful?
No. Patients do not experience pain during or after their filling procedure. To repair a tooth using any kind of filling, the dentist first administers a local anesthetic into the gums around the tooth. This numbs the entire area. Analgesic injections also don’t hurt. A topical numbing gel may be applied to the gums first to reduce the sensation of the tiny needle. After getting a filling, some patients do experience minor discomfort such as an aching or soreness around the tooth. This can be managed with over-the-counter pain relief medication. It may be helpful to also avoid eating or drinking hot and cold items for a day, sticking instead to warm or room-temperature foods and beverages.
Is there any recovery involved with Dental Fillings?
There is generally no recovery involved with dental filling treatment. However, the dentist may recommend avoiding very hard, crunchy, or sticky foods for a week or two after receiving care. This helps the filling fully integrate into the surrounding enamel without potential disruption. If you experience sensitivity, you may use toothpaste formulated for sensitive teeth. Eating lukewarm and room-temperature items can also help avoid uncomfortable sensitivity. If soreness or tenderness occur in the tooth or an adjacent tooth after the anesthetic has worn off, you may take an over-the-counter pain reliever to manage comfort. If, once full sensation has returned, the filling feels uncomfortable or has a sharp edge, contact the office. A quick adjustment to the filling may quickly resolve the concern.
The Tooth Filling Procedure
During the filling procedure, the tooth is prepared by removing any decay or damage in the area with a dental hand piece or laser. The surface of the tooth is cleaned and prepared for filling. The filling material is placed in the targeted area, where it will be finished and polished to match the appearance of the natural teeth. Dental fillings are placed during a single visit to a dentist’s office.
Some patients may require additional support after their filling procedure, such as the placement of a crown, implant or bridge. A root canal may be needed for severely damaged or infected teeth.
The dentist will discuss the filling materials and options with each patient before the procedure to determine the best option.
Dr. Bob’s office has always been a great place to take care of our family’s teeth.
“He is very gentle and understanding. If for any reason you have been unable to go to the dentist for quite a while, he is very understanding. Rather than chew you out for not going, he lets you know what he can do for you. His staff is wonderful as well. We have been going to his office for over 20 years. Where I am employed, quite a number of employees go to him too. He is very approachable.” Christine S
Get your dental fillings with our expert dentist, Dr. Bankhardt in Simi Valley, California. Call (805) 584-1194 or fill out a Contact Form here to schedule an appointment today! We proudly serve Simi Valley and surrounding areas, including Chatsworth, Moor Park, Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, and Northridge.