Bring Back Your Smile With Dr. David Painter
A bright, healthy smile can make all the difference, but over time, our teeth may become damaged from cavities and need repair. If you live in Auburn, IN, and have damaged teeth due to decay, dental fillings may be the solution to get your smile back. Dr. David Painter at Auburn Family Dentistry has extensive experience with tooth fillings. We use the latest techniques and materials to ensure your fillings look natural and last a long time.
Schedule your dental fillings appointment by calling Auburn Family Dentistry at (260) 357-2380 today!
What Are Dental Fillings?
Dental fillings, often simply called “fillings,” are restorations that repair damaged or decayed teeth. They play a vital role in preventing further tooth decay and maintaining oral health. These fillings are typically made from tooth-colored resin and customized to match the color and shape of your natural teeth, ensuring a seamless and aesthetically pleasing result.
There are several important reasons to get dental fillings if you have tooth decay or damage:
- Stop Decay: Fillings prevent cavity bacteria and acids from reaching the inner tooth structure and progressing the decay.
- Pain Relief: Damaged teeth can cause mild to severe pain. Fillings remove decay and stabilize the tooth.
- Appearance: Fillings restore natural tooth shape, structure, and visibility.
- Prevent Cracks: Small fractures in enamel can worsen without the support of fillings.
- Avoid Root Damage: If left untreated, decay can reach the root and require extraction.
- Improve Chewing: Fillings allow you to use the tooth for normal chewing and eating.
- Maintain Tooth Alignment: Decay can alter tooth positioning if unaddressed.
The Benefits of Dental Fillings
Dental fillings offer a range of benefits, including:
- Tooth Preservation: Fillings help preserve your natural teeth, preventing further decay.
- Aesthetic Improvement: Tooth-colored fillings enhance your smile’s appearance.
- Improved Functionality: Restoring damaged teeth enhances their functionality.
- Prevention of Tooth Sensitivity: Fillings can alleviate tooth sensitivity caused by cavities.
- Longevity: Depending on the type, fillings can last for many years with proper care.
The Dental Filling Process
The process begins with a thorough examination by our dentist. During this examination, our Auburn dentist will visually inspect the affected tooth and may also take X-rays to assess the extent of the decay. Based on the findings, we’ll determine if a filling is necessary.
Before the filling procedure begins, our dentist will administer a local anesthetic to numb the area around the affected tooth. This ensures that you won’t feel any pain during the procedure.
Removal of Decay
Once the area is numb, Dr. Painter will use a dental drill or laser to remove the decayed portion of the tooth. This step is crucial to ensure that all the decay is eliminated and the tooth is clean and prepared for the filling.
After removing the decay, Dr. Painter will prepare the tooth by shaping it to accommodate the filling material. The exact preparation process will depend on the type of filling being used.
With the tooth prepared, our dentist in Auburn will place the chosen filling material into the cavity. This can be done in layers, and each layer is hardened with a special curing light.
Shaping and Polishing
Once the filling material is in place and hardened, Dr. Painter will shape and polish it to ensure it fits comfortably with your bite and feels smooth on your tongue.
Our dentist will conduct a final examination to ensure the filling is secure and properly aligned with your natural teeth. They’ll also check your bite to make any necessary adjustments.
Caring for Your Dental Fillings
With proper oral hygiene and care, the average lifespan of dental fillings ranges from seven to 15 years. Here are some tips for making your fillings last:
- Brush Twice Daily: Gently brush near the filling and avoid abrasive toothpaste.
- Floss Daily: Carefully floss around the filling to avoid loose seal edges.
- Regular Dental Visits: See your dentist twice annually to detect any issues early.
- Avoid Chewing Hard Food: Stick to soft foods and use the opposite side of the mouth when chewing.
- Wear a Mouthguard: Use a mouthguard for contact sports to prevent fractures.
Frequently Asked Questions
For a single tooth, the whole process usually takes 30 minutes to an hour. If you need multiple fillings, plan for a longer time in your dentist’s chair. The number of teeth determines the time it takes to receive your fillings.
Signs a filling needs replacement include decay around its edges, fracturing, a loose feeling, sensitivity to hot or cold, or a visible gap between the filling and tooth. Schedule an exam if you notice any of these issues.
If decay is extensive and encompasses the pulp (nerve) of the tooth, a root canal may be required instead of just a filling. The pulp plays a vital role and must be treated separately if inflamed or infected.
With proper care, dental fillings generally last seven to 15 years before needing repair or replacement. Longevity depends on the filling material, oral hygiene, and eating and chewing habits.
Eliminate Cavities and Restore Your Smile! Call (260) 357-2380
If your smile has been compromised by tooth decay, fractures, or other damage, dental fillings offer an effective and affordable solution. Fillings restore the form and function of teeth for lasting oral health. With advanced technology and materials, fillings now blend in seamlessly.
Contact Auburn Family Dentistry in Auburn, IN, by calling (260) 357-2380 or filling out our online contact form. We’re happy to accept new and returning patients from Auburn and its surrounding areas, such as Garrett, Waterloo, and Moore, IN.