Dental fillings, like many other restorative procedures, protect your oral health. Your dentist examines your tooth and picks up his trusty tools. A dental drill removes the tooth’s decayed portion and ensures that only the healthy part remains in your mouth.
Then, the gap is filled down and concealed. Let’s break it further down for a better understanding.
Need for Dental Fillings
Your teeth enamel erodes over time as you bite and chew into food. This enamel erosion can meddle with the functionality of your teeth and cause decay. Therefore, your dentist suggests fillings to compensate for the enamel loss and smooth out the teeth’s surfaces. As a result, your oral health is restored, eliminating the sensitivity and discomfort.
Step-by-Step Dental Filling Procedure
Your dentist will perform a dental filling procedure in the following steps:
- Consultation & Planning
Your dentist will check your teeth to plan the best course of action. If he finds only minor decays and fractures, the dental filling will be the right procedure. However, severely damaged teeth require extensive restorative methods like implants or crowns.
Dental X-rays and a caries-detecting liquid can be used to pinpoint the location and extent of the decay. Then begins the planning process, as dental fillings are made of various materials, such as porcelain, amalgam, gold inlays, glass ionomer, and direct composite bonding.
The most suitable options will be picked according to the location of the decay, the patient’s medical records, aesthetic preferences, and financial needs.
After planning, your dentist will numb the affected area with the help of local anesthesia, such as laughing gas. This is crucial to keep the patient calm throughout the procedure. This makes the extraction of the decayed portion of the tooth pain-free.
- Decay Removal
Your dentist will double-check if the affected spot is properly numbed. Then, they can remove the infected part with the help of a dental drill. Thanks to the local anesthesia, you might feel a bit of pressure on the area, but it won’t cause any pain.
- Cleaning and Concealing
After extracting out the decayed portion of the tooth, the cavity will be thoroughly cleansed to eliminate any leftover particles after drilling. This will also disinfect the cavity from the inside to move on to the next stage.
Toward the end, the dentist will fill or conceal the teeth with the dental filling. It can be made of silver, gold, or ceramic, depending on your choice.
After Care Tips
Your dentist can ask you not to eat or drink until the numbing effect disappears. This is to prevent you from biting or chewing your cheek or tongue. Further care tips include:
- Tooth Pain
You can experience swelling or discomfort. However, taking over-the-counter medications can help. If they fail to provide relief, chances are that you’re your dental fillings messed up your bite. Your dentist can fix it before it causes further dental issues.
- Tooth Sensitivity
Tooth sensitivity after a filling procedure can increase. This can happen as dental drilling can trigger nerve or gum irritation. These symptoms are normal, but if you feel them too strongly, you can have a follow-up with your dentist.
You must not shy away whenever your dentist asks you to have dental fillings, as it is the most effective treatment to stop dental decay immediately. Ensure you receive all your restorative dental treatments from the most skilled dentists.