One of the most common procedures we perform at Singing River Dentistry is implanting a dental filling in a cavity. Patients tell us that one of the reasons they put off scheduling a visit to the dentist is because they are scared of having to get a cavity filled, so we take a lot of care to make sure our patients are comfortable during this procedure.
We have found that knowing more about what happens when you get a filling can help alleviate that fear, so read below for more information on what takes place after you sit down in the dentist’s chair.
Getting a Filling
If the dentist finds a cavity in one of your teeth, an appointment to get a filling will be scheduled. Once you sit down for the procedure, the dentist will quickly examine your mouth again and discuss with you any pain management options you want to use. Believe it or not, we have some patients who opt out of any anesthetic altogether, but most people choose to have a local anesthetic injected near the site of the filling.
Once you are numb, the dentist will get to work first thoroughly cleaning out the site of the filling. This involves making sure all of the bacteria that caused the cavity in the first place and any areas of decay are completely removed. The tooth being worked on should be completely numb by this point, so the drill that is used to remove the area of decay should not hurt. Don’t be afraid to speak up if you feel the anesthetic hasn’t completely taken effect yet.
Once that work is done, the dentist will then insert the filling into the newly cleaned space. There are several different types of filling material that can be used depending on the size of the cavity and your specific dental needs. The filling material can range from different types of metal to composite substances. If you have any concerns about what filling material you want us to use, make sure you speak with us before your appointment begins. After the filling has been implanted, it will be sealed and polished.
Taking Care of Your Filling
Once implanted, your dental filling will help prevent any further infection or decay in that tooth. It is still important, however, to keep your teeth and gums clean to prevent new cavities and protect your filling.
That means regularly brushing and flossing your teeth and taking care to avoid excessively acidic or sugary food and drinks.
Because fillings don’t last forever, especially if good oral hygiene habits aren’t followed. Symptoms of a cracked filling include sensitivity to hot or cold foods, sharp pain at the filling site or jagged feeling near the filling site. Cracked or broken fillings are often discovered by the dentist before any symptoms arise during an annual checkup.
If you feel like you need a filling, or if feel like an existing filling has cracked, call Singing River Dentistry at 256-712-3186 today to schedule an appointment for an examination.
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