Ann Arbor, MI
Brushing and flossing every day are essential habits for eliminating plaque and bacteria buildup from the surfaces of your teeth and preventing the formation of tooth decay and cavities. Also important are regular cleanings. If a cavity does form, it needs to be treated right away. At Greashaber Dentistry, we can treat cavities with composite fillings.
How Do I Get Cavities?
Plaque and bacteria are both naturally occurring substances in your mouth. Throughout the day, they accumulate on the surfaces of your teeth. Brushing and flossing are essential for keeping these substances at bay. While naturally occurring, an overabundance can become harmful. Both plaque and bacteria produce harmful acids that, when left on the surfaces of your teeth for too long, begin to erode the enamel. The enamel becomes weak, and eventually, cavities begin to form. Cavities cannot be reversed. If they are not promptly treated, they only continue to grow larger, compromising both the strength and the health of your teeth.
Treating Cavities with Composite Fillings
For decades, the go-to treatment for most cavities was amalgam fillings. Amalgam fillings, also called silver fillings, are made up of a mixture of metals including tin, nickel, and silver, which are suspended in liquid mercury. When cured, these fillings are exceptionally strong. However, their color, their metal content, and their mercury content make them undesirable. Composite fillings are a newer alternative to amalgam fillings. These fillings use composite resin to restore cavities. Composite resin is a mixture of fine glass, plastic, and other materials. It is a tooth-colored material that blends in beautifully with the rest of your natural tooth structure.
The process for getting a composite filling is straightforward and can be completed in a single visit. Depending upon the size of the cavity and its location, you may or may not need a local anesthetic. We begin by cleaning the affected tooth and drilling away the decay. After the tooth is cleaned, an acid etch is applied to the cavity, which creates a rough texture in your enamel. This enhances the bond between the composite resin material and your natural tooth. The acid is washed off, and the tooth is dried. The composite resin is placed inside the cavity and cured. Finally, we polish it smooth, providing you with a seamless restoration of your cavity.
Benefits of Composite Fillings
Composite fillings offer numerous benefits:
|Composite resin matches the color of your natural teeth, making it perfect for cavities in your visible teeth.
|Composite resin bonds with your natural tooth structure rather than just filling a space. This means that less of your natural tooth needs to be drilled away.
|The material is fairly strong and can withstand most normal daily wear and tear.
|These fillings do not contain any metals, making them a good option for those who have metal allergies.
|The fillings also do not contain any mercury, making them ideal for patients who are not fond of the idea of mercury in their fillings.
When a cavity forms, it is essential to have it treated right away to prevent more serious issues from occurring. If you suspect that you have a cavity or if you’re having any issues with oral hygiene, call Greashaber Dentistry at (734) 662-1113 to schedule your appointment today.