Dental Fillings in Countryside, IL
In the United States, one in four adults has at least one cavity. Cavities can lead to more severe infections, making it essential to get treatment before tooth decay progresses. At Hope Dental, we offer dental fillings to protect teeth that have had a cavity or those that have cracks or chips. But what are dental fillings, and how do they help?
What Are Dental Fillings?
Dental fillings are materials used to repair or restore damaged teeth. The most common use of dental fillings is to strengthen and protect a tooth that has undergone a root canal or similar procedure due to tooth decay.
Bacteria cause cavities. When certain bacteria come into contact with starches and sugars from foods or drinks, they create an acid that wears away at tooth enamel, leading to the loss of minerals.
This mineral loss then leads to decay. Early tooth decay is reversible, but if it progresses, it can create a small hole in your tooth.
If the decay gets worse, we might have to remove some of the tooth’s pulp. To ensure that the tooth retains its structure, we add a filling. If we need to add a crown, we may also need to fill the tooth in to provide the support the crown needs.
Dental fillings can also provide stability to a cracked tooth and protect it from bacteria.
There are different types of dental fillings, including:
- Glass ionomer cement
- Composite resin
At Hope Dental, we use tooth-colored composite resin dental fillings, which are a mixture of powdered glass and plastic resin. These fillings look almost identical to the natural tooth material they replace. However, if a patient wants gold, silver or another option, we can cater our dentistry to their needs and goals.
Benefits of Composite Resin Dental Fillings
Tooth-colored composite resin dental fillings do not require as much drilling as other types. For some fillings, including amalgam, dentists have to remove some of the healthy tooth structure along with the infected section. That is not necessary with composite resin.
Composite resin dental fillings also bond with your tooth. We add a bonding agent with the filling, allowing both to harden. By bonding to the tooth, the filling provides added strength.
Composite resin also hardens quickly. Because we use a special type of light to dry it, you can expect it to harden in less than a minute.
Its natural appearance and ability to bond easily make composite resin a good choice for dealing with cracked teeth. It does not leave patchy discolorations, as other types of dental fillings can.
With composite resin, there are fewer chances of developing tooth sensitivity issues because the resin helps insulate the tooth from hot and cold temperatures.
Tooth-colored composite resin is also easier to repair if it begins to degrade. It can release a small amount of fluoride that can help prevent further decay, as well.
Preparing to Have a Dental Filling
Contact Hope Dental for a Free consultation if you have a cavity or other damage to a tooth. During your first appointment, we will examine the area to see the extent of the problem. If necessary, we may take X-rays of the tooth and the bone surrounding it.
If there is an infection in the pulp, we may need to perform a root canal before adding the filling. This may require a second appointment, but we will apply temporary fillings to protect your tooth.
We will ask you about your oral hygiene routine, your medical history, and any medications or supplements you take. If you have allergies to metals or anything else, let us know, especially if we need to place a crown on your tooth.
During this initial consultation, we will also offer detailed information about the costs of our services as well as the payment options we offer. We work with most insurance plans and can also provide third-party financing options, many of which start with 0% interest rates.
Although most insurance plans cover dental fillings, we’ll help you check with your provider to confirm the extent of this coverage.
Getting a Dental Filling
When you come in for a dental filling, we will apply a local anesthetic to numb your gum and jaw. If you have dental anxieties, we can also offer mild sedatives to keep you comfortable.
We will use a drill to remove the decayed part of the tooth. After confirming the decay has been cleared, we will clean the cavity, removing debris and disinfecting the area. If the decay is near the tooth’s root, we may need to add a layer of resin to the bottom of the tooth to protect the nerve.
We then add the filling in layers, hardening each with a special LED light, and shape the filling to give it a natural look before polishing it.
At Hope Dental, Dr. Russell Ras will treat you from the start of the procedure to the end, ensuring you receive continuous care.
Caring for Dental Fillings
You need to treat dental fillings as you would your natural teeth. Brush them twice a day, preferably after every meal, and include flossing in your daily routine. You should use fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush. It can also be helpful to rinse with mouthwash daily to help remove bacteria, but try to avoid rinses that have alcohol.
To help prevent plaque from forming, limit the amount of sugar and starch you consume. After eating starchy or sugary foods, it’s best to rinse your mouth and brush your teeth.
With composite resin fillings, you can eat whatever you like, though you may want to avoid very hard foods because they can chip or crack the filling, as well as your natural teeth.
You also want to avoid biting your fingernails or opening packages with your teeth. If you grind your teeth at night, we recommend wearing a mouth guard because the pressure your jaws exert can damage your teeth and your fillings.
It’s important to get regular dental checkups. We can help you maintain the fillings in great condition so that you do not have to replace them. Contact us immediately if you see part of a filling is missing or if you notice cracks or chips. If we think your filling has been damaged, we can quickly repair it.
Dental fillings can last for years, but they are not permanent. Wear and tear from chewing can erode them, and grinding your teeth can make it worse. During your regular checkups at our office, we can catch these issues and replace loose, damaged, or missing fillings. With proper oral care, composite fillings last about 10 years.
Tooth-Colored Dental Fillings in Cook County
If you have a cavity and want to prevent it from getting worse, reaching out to us at Hope Dental can be the right choice. We are here to find the underlying cause of the problem and offer treatment options that fit your goals and your budget.
Located in Cook County, IL, Hope Dental relies on the expertise of Dr. Russell Ras. He has more than 30 years of experience offering dental services in the same location. Using the latest technologies at his state-of-the-art facilities and opting for less invasive treatments when possible, he is ready to help you with all of your dental goals.
Questions & Answers
As a patient, you can expect your oral health to be our top priority. We are here to schedule your regular check-ups, alert you of any serious conditions, and provide any restorative dental procedures that you may need. With our advanced dental technology and highly trained staff, our goal is to make your visit as pleasant as possible and help you achieve optimal oral health.
Plaque is the root cause of all cavities. The acids in plaque remove minerals in your tooth’s outer enamel. The first stage of cavities is when the erosion causes small openings in the enamel. Once areas of enamel are worn away, the bacteria and acid can reach the next layer of your teeth, called dentin. That’s why it is so important to brush and floss your teeth twice daily and to see your dentist twice a year.
Preventative dentistry is an important part of avoiding decay and of keeping your oral health intact. In addition to regular home care, routine cleaning appointments should be scheduled every 6 months.
Local anesthetics help to make the procedure essentially pain free. Pain from a cavity usually happens when it has become so big that it involves the nerve inside the tooth. At Hope Dental, we try to catch things when they are small so that that type of pain is avoided.
Depending on how many teeth need to be fixed the price varies for each case. Book your consultation now to find out what is needed for your situation and we will provide you with a quote.
Most insurance companies will cover tooth colored fillings, but we advise you to contact your insurance provider to find out what your plan covers.