A Filling Is A Fine Way To Treat Tooth DecayAugust 8th, 2016
Tooth decay is the most common oral health issue in the United States.
The National Institutes of Health reports that more than 90 percent of adults will have at least one cavity during their lives.
Think about that for a moment. Statistically, 9 of the next 10 people you see either have had or will have a cavity at some point. If you are part of that 9, then Ascension Premier Dental wants to help.
If you suspect that you may have a cavity or you want to prevent one from developing, schedule an appointment at our dentist office in Geismar, LA, soon.
Preventing problems is always the best approach to your oral health. This is why we encourage everyone to brush twice per day, to floss every day, and to visit our office a couple times during the year for checkups.
Even so, we know a lot can happen in the months between your routine visits. We want to help you maintain your smile for as long as possible, which is why we do a thorough check for cavities and other oral health issues when you visit us.
You can help yourself in this regard to by being aware of the signs and symptoms of tooth decay. You may already know some of these symptoms, but a reminder doesn’t hurt.
◼︎ Discoloration such as black or brown spots on your teeth
◼︎ Bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth
◼︎ A toothache
◼︎ Swelling of your gums near a sore tooth
The last two symptoms on this list are often signs that your tooth decay has reached a more advanced stage. If you take action when the early symptoms appear, you may save yourself from pain, not to mention more expensive treatments.
Causes Of Cavities
Our mouths are filled with bacteria. Although many have beneficial functions in our mouths, other bacteria can be harmful.
Some of these harmful bacteria use the sugars and the starches in the foods that we eat to form plaque. This is a sticky film that clings to teeth. This keeps the bacteria close to your teeth where it can create acids that eat into the outer layer of a tooth.
The create a hole that we call a cavity.
Brushing and flossing (yes, you need to do both) are how you can remove these bacteria from your teeth on a day-to-day basis. You won’t ever remove all the bacteria from your mouth, which is why this preventive care needs to be an everyday habit.
Avoiding preventive care and dental visits greatly increases your risk of developing tooth decay and subsequent problems, like tooth infections.
Other factors that increase your risk of cavities include:
▸ Eating lots of sugar and carbohydrates
▸ Dry mouth because saliva helps to remove bacteria and plaque from your teeth
▸ Having diabetes
▸ Using tobacco, including cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco products
Treating Tooth Decay
If you do develop a cavity, we encourage you to act quickly to take care of it. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of problem you can treat at home.
In the early stages, we can treat a cavity with a dental filling.
This is a relatively simple procedure. At our office, we remove the decay from your tooth and then we fill the tooth with a composite resin. This makes for a tooth-colored filling.
This white filling serves the primary purposes of restoring the function of your teeth and of creating a seal to protect against a new infection. But unlike metallic fillings, our fillings blend in with your smile so other people may not realize you ever had a cavity.
Next to preventive the tooth decay from developing, getting a dental filling is the best option for treating a cavity.
Unfortunately, some patients don’t come to see us early enough for a filling to work. If the cavity grows too large, then a dental crown may be necessary to restore the tooth.
Getting a crown involves removing the outer layer of your tooth and then bonding the dental crown to your tooth.
If you wait too long to get treated, then you are risking a tooth infection, which will likely require a root canal treatment instead.
Practice Prevention And Act Early
If you live in or near Geismar, LA, our dentist office will be here to help when you need us for a dental filling or another treatment. At the same time, we hope you will make preventive dental care a daily habit.