If your dentist has spotted a cavity in your mouth, you will most likely have to get a dental filling. This minor procedure treats cavities, which are small holes in your teeth. The decayed tissue is removed from the tooth and is then filled with a hardening material. If a cavity isn’t filled, it can lead to serious complications including needing to get the tooth removed.
What Causes Cavities?
Simply put, a cavity is permanent damage in your tooth that causes small holes. This damage is also known as tooth decay, which is accompanied by weakened enamel, which can then cause the potential of tiny holes. While tooth decay can be stopped and reversed, once it turns into a cavity, it cannot be reversed.
Tooth decay can become deeper and deeper within the tooth, leading to exposure of inner nerves. Without getting the decay removed and the cavity filled, the decay can continue to wreak havoc on the tooth, causing increased pain and issues.
There are a variety of risk factors that are associated with having cavities. They include consuming a lot of sugary or acidic foods and beverages, smoking, having poor oral hygiene, not visiting the dentist enough, not getting enough fluoride, and worn down fillings or sealants.
How is a Filling Completed?
First, your dentist will apply a numbing gel onto your gums to prepare it for a local anesthetic, which is then injected. This should make a good portion of your mouth feel completely numb. After the anesthetic has taken effect, they will then use a special drill to remove all the decay from the tooth.
After it’s all removed, your tooth will be filled. There are several different types of fillings, including ones made out of amalgam, composite, or ceramic material to close up the hole. The filling is then polished and evened out so it’s comfortable and unnoticeable when you bite down.
Do Cavity Fillings Hurt?
While there may be some discomfort or pressure during the procedure, the anesthetic should prevent any pain from occurring. If you do feel any pain, your dentist can give you more anesthetic.
After your procedure, the affected teeth may be slightly sensitive to hot and cold foods but should go away shortly after. If they worsen or don’t go away within a few days, we recommend that you reach out to us.
Contact our Dentist in South Loop
Cavities are rather common, and if you think you may have one, making your appointment sooner rather than later will only benefit you. Signs of a cavity include having a toothache, tooth sensitivity, sharp or mild pain, holes in your teeth, or brown, black, or white staining on your teeth.
Give our office a call today for a dental checkup to ensure you don’t have any developing cavities.