Must fillings be obvious and well, ugly? In times past, dark amalgam restorations were a dentist's only choice to fill a cavity. Today, modern dentistry offers cosmetic fillings. Long-lasting, bonded right to tooth structure and seamlessly beautiful, cosmetic fillings from your team of dentists at Bolingbrook, IL, strengthen and beautify teeth for many additional years of service. Here's what Dr. Rani Seeth, Dr. Alina Huff and Dr. Fatima Quadri offer their patients at Bolingbrook Dental Care.
What causes a cavity?
Oral bacteria does. Carbohydrate food residues, or plaque, stick in the cracks and crevices in chewing surfaces and between teeth. Plaque, which hardens into tartar, contains Streptococcal microbes which eat away at tooth enamel. The resulting hole is what dentists call a cavity. Undiscovered and unrestored, cavities worsen, leading to abscess and tooth loss.
The American Dental Association (ADA) says that tooth decay is a frequent problem for children and adults in the United States. While preventive dentistry practices at home and in the office help avoid this destructive process, patients must be vigilant about their oral health no matter their ages so they retain excellent oral function and complete attractive smiles for life.
Treating a cavity
Enter the dental filling. When Dr. Seeth, Dr. Huff or Dr. Quadri discovers decay through visual exam and/or X-ray, she treats it with a cosmetic filling. Typically, cosmetic fillings require less enamel reduction than their amalgam counterparts do. These naturally-colored restorations also are more flexible than metal fillings.
Types of cosmetic fillings
There are three basic kinds: composite resin, porcelain and glass ionomer. Each material has its own unique application and features a discreet appearance.
Composite resin fillings are crafted from the same material used in bonding treatments (which repair small defects such as chips and gaps). Your dentist prepares the site by removing the decayed enamel. Then, she layers in the acrylic and glass blend and cures each layer with a dental light. This technique ensures a strong bond to the natural tooth structure. After adjusting for proper bite, your composite filling is polished and virtually vanishes from sight.
Porcelain fillings repair larger cavities, particularly on molars. Also called inlays and onlays, these porcelain partial crowns lie within or over the cusps, or corners, of a large tooth.
Finally, glass ionomer fillings restore lingual or buccal decay--that is, on the tongue-side or the cheek-side of a tooth. Made of glass and sustained-release fluoride, these restorations resemble your natural tooth enamel and help make it stronger, too.
Your renewed tooth
Modern fillings last for years, particularly when you brush, floss and eat a tooth-friendly diet. When you next come to Bolingbrook Dental Care, inquire about these amazing restorations. Call today to get on the schedule: (630) 739-5500.