Cavities are pretty common in the United States, with even children affected by them in large numbers. The procedure for restoring teeth is straightforward, with dentist’s tooth filling the child’s or adult’s tooth. Tooth fillings are standard dental procedures for repairing the damages from tooth decay. Filling a cavity helps prevent further erosion and allows teeth to function normally.
The tooth decay problem is chronic in the country, with approximately 92 percent of adults between 20 and 64 having a cavity. If you want to learn more about filling holes and the materials commonly used for the procedure, please continue reading this article for information.
What to Expect When Getting a Dental Filling?
Filling procedures are pretty straightforward, and the dentist begins by examining your mouth using dental instruments to check the cavity. If dentists want to confirm the tooth decay’s extent, they may take x-rays of the tooth or teeth.
You are given local anesthesia to numb the tooth and the surrounding tissues to prevent pain. If you need a filling on the tooth surface, anesthesia is not required.
When the tooth is entirely numb, the dentist will use a dental drill through the enamel to remove the decay within the tooth. Some dentists also use air abrasion tools, but the technique is not as popular as the dental drill. After tooth decay removal, the dentist prepares the area for the filling and fills the hollow space. Your tooth is polished and checked to ensure your bite is not affected.
You will experience some sensitivity after the numbing agent wears off but shouldn’t feel any abnormal pain. You must avoid hot and cold foods for a couple of days but can normally eat besides the above.
How Much Time Is Required for Getting Dental Fillings?
Dental fillings require an hour or less to restore your tooth. More time is necessary for the procedure if you need fillings for an extensive cavity or multiple teeth. The material used for dental filling determines how much time is required to accomplish the process.
- If you have chosen composite teeth fillings, more time is required because the dentist’s filling material is layered on the tooth. However, the procedure is accomplished in one visit.
- Composite fillings of some types are made from an impression in a dental laboratory and require a second visit to cement the filling.
- If you have gold or porcelain fillings called inlays or Onlays, you require multiple visits to the dentist’s office. During the first visit, the decay is removed from the cavity, and impressions are made for the dental laboratory to fabricate the filling. The filling is bonded to your tooth during the second visit.
If you want to replace older fillings, the time required is the same or slightly longer if the filling material needs drilling out. The cavity and the older filling material are removed, the hole cleaned, and new filling material inserted.
What Is the Time Required for Dental Fillings to Heal?
The time needed by dental fillings to heal depends on the material used during the procedure by dentist Oak lawn, IL.
- Amalgam fillings are not at full strength when inserted and require about 24 hours to heal fully. If you have amalgam fillings, it is best to avoid having hard foods until the filling has been set entirely.
- Glass ionomer and composite resin fillings are light-cured after being set in one to two mm layers thick and need about 20 seconds per layer.
- Ceramic fillings are the fastest and set immediately receiving help from the dentist’s blue wavelength light. The filling is milled or fired, and the adhesive holds it in place for curing in seconds.
Healing from the procedure is not a challenge except for some sensitivity you feel, which subsides in a couple of days.
What Is the Life Span of Dental Fillings?
The lifespan of tooth fillings depends on your dental hygiene. If you want to extend its life span, you must diligently practice dental care and make every effort possible to prevent new cavities from developing. It helps to remember all teeth are different, and the lifespan of dental fillings can vary between people. However, you can expect amalgam fillings to last for five to 25 years, composite fillings between five to 15 years, and gold fillings between 15 to 20 years.
The filling material you have in your mouth, your dental hygiene routine, and regular visits to your dentist for checkups can extend the lifespan of the restorations on your teeth. However, the procedure is nothing to fear because it is pretty straight forward.