Tooth Fillings

Maintaining healthy oral hygiene on a daily basis and visiting your dentist regularly for cleanings are your best defenses against cavities and other dental health concerns. Sometimes these practices are not enough, and you will need to come into the office for repair. Tooth repair, such as filling a cavity or fixing a crack, is very common and does not take a long time in the dentist's chair. You can be assured that your teeth will be back in good health as quickly as possible.

Dental Fillings for Cavities It is not unusual to need a filling sometime during your life, even if you practice good oral hygiene. Cavities can sneak in between teeth, inside the grooves of molars, and into the hard to reach areas of your mouth. Luckily, technological advances in dental procedures have made it easier and more convenient to damage or decay. Dental filling material lasts longer and looks more like the natural tooth than the materials dentists used to use for fillings. If the dentist has found a cavity during a routine exam or if you are having discomfort or sensitivity from tooth decay, it is time to schedule an appointment for a dental filling. Dental fillings follow the same process for the majority of cases. If you have any questions or concerns about getting a cavity filled, such as, "How long does it take to fill a cavity?" or "Does it hurt to get a filling?" just ask your dentist to go over the procedure with you in advance. By knowing what to expect, the procedure can help you put your fears to rest.

  • The area surrounding the affected tooth is numbed using a local anesthetic that is applied topically.
  • Using special dental tools, the dentist removes the decay from the tooth.
  • The dentist uses a dental filling material to fill the previously decayed area of the tooth.
  • A final check to make sure everything is shaped and filled correctly takes place.

Dental Repair for Cracks

Although fillings for cavities are one of the most common types of dental repair, a cracked tooth is also a cause for concern. Many patients do not realize a tooth is cracked until the problem is discovered during a routine exam. In other cases, there are symptoms that point to the possibility of a cracked tooth and need to be analyzed.

  • On and off tooth pain in one area
  • Pain that is only felt while eating or drinking
  • Pain that is only felt when biting down but goes away immediately
  • A constant feeling of food or debris stuck between the teeth, but nothing is removed when flossing Since cracks can have instant symptoms or no symptoms at all, it is important to visit your dentist for a routine check-up. The dentist asks questions about tooth sensitivity and can narrow down an area of concern if you are having pain or discomfort. The dentist can sometimes find the crack using only a visual exam, but an x-ray is also a useful identification tool. Cracks can be caused by a number of different issues, but many patients never know the reason a crack occurs.
  • An injury or accident that directly affects the mouth
  • Consistent teeth grinding at night or clenching during the day
  • Uneven pressure placed to one area due to an unbalanced bite
  • Chewing on non-food items, such as ice or hard candies
  • Previous repairs on the tooth that led to a compromised structural integrity

The process of repairing cracks in the tooth is straightforward and has improved over time due to advances in technology with dental procedures. If caught early, a crack in the tooth may need less intervention than if it is present for a long time. Untreated cracks can accumulate decay, break off into pieces, or damage the tooth pulp over time. Depending on the type of damage and location, the treatment plan progresses in one of several ways.

  • Smaller damage can be repaired using dental filling material.
  • A crown may be placed over the tooth to prevent breakage or worsening of the crack.
  • If the pulp is damaged, a root canal may be necessary.
  • Excessively damaged teeth may need to be removed completely. They can be replaced by an implant or dental device.

Contact Delaware Smile Center If you have any concerns about a potential cavity or crack in your tooth, schedule an appointment with Delaware Smile Center for analysis. Their team strives to make sure you never have to worry about the process of tooth repair. Professionalism, combined with expert experience, means you are in the best of hands. Even if you are not currently experiencing any specific issues, it is important to visit your dentist for a routine cleaning and exam twice a year. If you have any questions about the available services or would like to schedule an appointment, contact Delaware Smile Center today. Call (302) 231-3051 today.