How Does a Filling Help My Tooth?
A dental filling is one of the oldest ways to restore a tooth. A filling plays an important role in dentistry because it helps to stop tooth decay from completely destroying a tooth. Tooth decay is progressive, which means that it will progressively worsen until it is treated. When tooth decay erodes the enamel of a tooth and causes a cavity, a filling can both disinfect the tooth of the bacteria and restore the tooth’s enamel to protect and fortify it. When a filling is not done, the decay can continue to travel deep within the tooth affecting the sensitive inner tissues and pulp, where it can cause infection and pain. A root canal treatment may become necessary to restore the tooth, and in severe cases, an extraction may be necessary. A filling performed by your dentist in Kansas City, KS, can help stop decay from progressing to that serious of a stage.
Disinfecting the Inside
A cavity is caused by bacterial acid eroding your enamel. The bacteria can continue to invade your tooth reaching the dentin, which is the softer layer of tooth just beneath the enamel. When performing a dental filling, your dentist will first apply a local anesthetic to the area around the affected tooth. The next step will be to completely disinfect the tooth to clear out any bacteria. Any damaged parts of the tooth will also be removed.
Restoring the Outside
The parts that remain of the tooth after it has been completely disinfected will not be as strong as a complete tooth. A tooth-colored filling uses a composite resin (that can be color-matched to your tooth) to restore the outside of your tooth. The resin is applied directly to the tooth, shaped into a natural appearance, hardened, and lastly, polished. This will give your tooth a outer shell that is similar in durability and appearance to your natural enamel. It can protect your tooth against further decay or damage.