A filling is an amalgam or resin composite material that is used to repair tooth cavities frequently caused by damage or decay.
Fillings strengthen the inside of the tooth and can relieve the pain and sensitivity often caused by cavities. A filling treatment can prevent further damage as well as extend the life of the tooth.
If you are experiencing these symptoms you may have a tooth cavity that requires a dental filling treatment:
When you come in for your consultation, your dentist will advise you on the most appropriate course of treatment, which may involve a filling.
A dental X-ray of your mouth and teeth is often taken to establish the extent of the cavity. When caused by tooth decay, dental cavities can form under the surface of the tooth. These are sometimes practically invisible from the top.
At the start of a filling treatment, your dentist will administer a local anaesthetic to numb the area around the damaged tooth.
Tooth material is taken away from the top of the tooth in order to access the cavity. When the cavity has been exposed, damaged and decayed parts of the tooth are removed. The cavity is then thoroughly cleaned out and disinfected.
Your dentist will use grey dental amalgam or tooth-coloured composite resin to fill up the cavity and repair the tooth. The filling sets very quickly, and then the surface is smoothed off to remove rough spots. Your dentist will then ensure there is no discomfort when you close your teeth together.
You may notice the filling in your tooth when you leave the dentist. However, you should be able to eat and drink normally in the first few hours after your treatment.
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