Fred is a typical guy in his 40s. He works hard, and he had a few cavities when he was younger.
He’s had to have his fillings replaced a couple times already. One got chipped, and another has started to separate from his teeth. But something has always bothered Fred about his fillings.
They are amalgam fillings, which means they are made with a blend of mercury and other metals. That also means they look metallic, which has made him a little self-conscious about his smile.
If Fred lived near Monroe, LA, we would welcome him to our dentist office where we have tooth-colored fillings, which will blend in with his teeth.
We’ll tell you a little more about what we could do for Fred (if he were a real patient) and about how our fillings could help you too if you visit Bayou Dental Group.
More than 90 percent of American adults will have at least one cavity during their lives. Knowing this, there’s a really good chance that you already know several people who have fillings.
No matter what kind of fillings they have, they can all count on one thing. At some point, those fillings will need to be replaced.
Some fillings do last longer than others, but dentists do not yet have a permanent filling that we offer to our patients.
Fillings serve an important function. They rebuild the original shape of your tooth, and they create a protective seal over areas that have already been damaged by tooth decay.
The longer you have your filling, the more likely it is that something will happen to it.
You may develop a chip in your filling. A crack may form in your filling.
The filling could start to separate from your tooth, or worse, it could fall out completely.
If any of these things happen, then your filling has gone from being beneficial to being a liability.
An exposed filling could allow bacteria to reach your tooth in a place that can’t be cleaned with a toothbrush or with dental floss. That means a new cavity could form inside your tooth where you can’t see it.
By the time you realize you have this new cavity, there’s a good chance you will need more than filling to fix the problem.
This is one of the reasons we encourage our patients to visit us a couple times each year. As part of your routine examinations, we will check the condition of your fillings and let you know when it’s time to have them replaced.
We use white fillings for our patients. Specifically, we use Esthet-X HD. This is a composite material that can be matched to the color of your natural teeth but is also known for its strength.
For a patient like Fred, we could use this to replace his old, worn out fillings. When we were finished, it may be hard for most people to tell which of his teeth had a cavity. This also could make Fred less self-conscious and more confident about his smile.
With metal fillings, your cavity didn’t just damage your tooth. In a way, it becomes a reminder of a problem that you had years ago.
We don’t think a cavity that you had years or even decades past should continue to ruin your smile.
If you have amalgam fillings, you too may want to have them replaced. From a purely preventive dental standpoint, there’s no reason to replace those fillings until they start to wear down.
From a cosmetic dental perspective, we completely understand why you may want to replace your metallic fillings with tooth-colored ones.
Other Uses For Composite Fillings
We have certainly used our white fillings to replace older fillings for several of our patients, but that’s not the only way we can use this material.
The most obvious use is to fix teeth damaged by tooth decay. If you a just now developing a cavity, then you can get a tooth-colored filling to fix your tooth.
The material also can be used for dental bonding. This is a way of rebuilding teeth that are broken, chipped, or worn down. If you have a crack in one of your teeth, then composite resin can help to fix that, too.
Are You Ready For A New Filling?
Bayou Dental Group is happy to fix your old fillings or to give you a new one for a more recent cavity. To learn more about our tooth-colored fillings, call (318) 302-4236 or fill out our online contact form.