Test Your Knowledge: What do you know about Cavities?

Composite Fillings Orange dentistAt our office, our Orange dentist often fills cavities.  It is a common procedure even though cavities can sometimes be avoided.  Most patients believe poor oral hygiene routines cause cavities.  However, that’s not always the case.  Cavities love to form in places where brushing and flossing don’t reach and in crevices such as your back molars.  They love uneven surfaces and chipped teeth, too.  With National Oral Hygiene Month taking place next Month, let’s look at what you know about cavities so we can work together to prevent them

 

Is pain a sign of a cavity?

In many cases, patients do experience pain when they have a cavity.  This is because the decay is touching a nerve or close to the gum line.  However, sometimes cavities form on the side of a tooth away from sensitive areas.  When this happens, pain might not be felt until the decay gets worse.

 

 Do I have to get a filling when I have a cavity?

The short answer is yes, though we suppose if you like the idea of a constant toothache you can try to skip it.   However, bacteria and tooth decay, if left untreated, will continue to grow.  By filling a cavity, we eliminate the bacteria and decay, and seal the tooth so further damage doesn’t occur.  Without proper treatment, the cavity will get larger until it eats through the enamel and makes its way into the dentin and pulp; essentially the nerve center of your tooth.

 

 What materials are used to fill cavities?

Typically, two options exist at our Orange dentist office when filling a cavity.  The first option is a blend of metal alloys.  These are recognizable by their silver color.  The other option is a composite resin filling.  Resins are a wonderful option if you wish to keep the look of your smile the same without calling attention to your cavity.  In the past, silver fillings were the only option.  Luckily, with advancements in the dental industry, the composite resins let you keep your smile looking natural while offering the same protection for your tooth.

 

 How long does it take to fill a cavity?

Getting a cavity filled is a common procedure with the majority of the time being spent on removing the decay.  Our Orange dentist carefully removes the decay from your tooth and makes sure it is completely gone.  Then, we fill the area back in with the filling so that your tooth retains its structure and is sealed to prevent additional decay.  A filling is completed in just one single visit.

 

When you suspect a cavity, the longer you wait to have it filled the more damage it can cause. Don’t wait until you need a root canal or another restorative dental procedure. Call our office today and speak with us about your oral health issues. We’ll find a time that conveniently works for your schedule so your tooth can be restored and your smile protected.  Learn more about our services on our Facebook page or find great oral hygiene tips that will keep you cavity-free.

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