No matter how strict you are with your dental hygiene regimen, it’s almost impossible for you to not have had cavities in the past or to not have them ever in the future. Our mouths are very dynamic environments. A slight change in the sugar levels or the production of saliva can send our oral bacteria into a mad race for multiplication. For this reason, you will have to go through the process of having a cavity filled at least once in your life.
The Drill and Fill Procedure
What this procedure does is to fill in any cavities to prevent bacteria from causing further damage and making the cavity go deeper into the tooth. When the cavity is deep enough that it has already reached the pulp region, this is where the problem takes place because the sensitive nerve endings are irritated by bacteria as well as by food debris.
Before the cavity can be filled in, any decayed material first has to be removed. In the past, dentists had to drill off these dental tissues which can actually lead to a bigger hole and severely weaken the tooth in some instances. However, advancements in technology have allowed dentists to make use of lasers to get rid of decayed material without having to cause extensive damage to the tooth.
Once the tooth has been cleaned, your dentist can then apply a special kind of adhesive on the sides of the cavity which will enable the filling material to stick and be adhered tightly to the cavity. This is crucial since any leaks will still allow bacteria to penetrate into the heart of the tooth and still cause damage to the pulp.
Choosing the Filling Material
There are two types of filling materials which are often used – amalgam and composite resin. If you are concerned about heavy metals being contained in your dental filling material, then you ought to pick the composite resin variety instead. While dentists assert that the levels of heavy metal found in amalgams are too minute to cause any damage, some patients would rather choose the option which does not contain any trace of metals at all.
On the other hand, durability would dictate that amalgams have the advantage over composite resin material, although new improvements in the manufacturing of composite resin materials have allowed the filling material to cope up with the amalgam’s durability and strength.
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