You've worked hard all your life to take good care of your oral health. Yet, tooth decay sometimes happens even when you are doing your best to brush and floss every day. While the news that you have a cavity is always upsetting, the good news is that dental technology has advanced to the point that you have many options for restoring the tooth. As you prepare for your first tooth repair ever, use this guide to understand the different types of teeth fillings that are available to give you the best results.
Fillings that are made using cast gold can last as much as 10 years or more, and this is one of the strongest filling materials available today. Due to the color of gold, your dentist will likely only recommend it for a back tooth that is out of your smile zone. However, some people prefer the color over silver when a metal filling is needed.
While cast gold is strong enough to withstand the chewing forces that occur between your top and bottom molars, this may not be an option if the filling needs to be placed next to a tooth that already has an amalgam filling. Placing these two types of metals too close together sometimes results in galvanized shock or a buzzing sensation in your mouth.
You are probably most familiar with this type being called silver fillings due to their color. Similar to gold, these fillings are strong, but they may not be the most aesthetically-pleasing choice for tooth decay that occurs in the front of your mouth. However, amalgam tends to be less expensive than other options, which could be a factor in your decision. If you experience dental habits such as nighttime tooth grinding, the strength of this filling could also protect you from having to have it replaced in the future.
Tooth-colored fillings are typically the ideal choice when you need to restore a tooth that is visible to others. Composite resin is also available in many different shades that your dentist can choose from to match the surrounding teeth. While the material is not as strong as gold or amalgam, it can be used in the back teeth if you have a small cavity or have high aesthetic needs.
During your treatment visit, your dentist evaluates the size of the cavity, the alignment of your bite and your aesthetic needs to make the best recommendations for teeth fillings. By knowing a few things about each one, you will be prepared to get started on your treatment with full confidence that you will be happy with the results.
Contact a dental office like New Image Dental for more information and assistance.