Tooth-colored Fillings: Convenient, Durable, and Discreet
A dental filling is a restoration that improves the function and integrity of teeth damaged by cavities, decay, or minor trauma. Dr. Brandon Huang is a leader in modern dental treatments and offers tooth-colored fillings at his office in Manhattan, NY. These restorations are made of composite resin and offer several advantages over metal fillings, such as improved aesthetics.
"Composite resin fillings blend seamlessly with your natural teeth and offer an inconspicuous, natural look."
TOOTH-COLORED VS. METAL FILLINGS
Many of our patients prefer tooth-colored fillings for several reasons. Metal fillings are easily visible, even when they are used to repair a molar in the back of the mouth. Unlike traditional fillings, composite resin blends seamlessly with your teeth and offers a natural look. For this reason, some patients may choose to replace their metal fillings with tooth-colored restorations.
Metal fillings require your affected tooth to be reshaped, which often results in the removal of healthy tissue. Conversely, tooth-colored fillings are a very conservative treatment. Your doctor can remove a smaller amount of tissue to place this type of filling, which preserves the integrity of the tooth.
Metal fillings expand and contract with temperature fluctuations. Over time, this can cause the fillings to fall out or even create small fractures in your teeth. Composite does not respond to hot and cold temperatures, so it does not impact the structure of your tooth. In addition, tooth-colored fillings chemically bond with the enamel for a secure, stable restoration. When placed by Dr. Huang, tooth-colored fillings can last up to 10 years.
PLACING A FILLING
During a consultation with Dr. Huang, you will discuss your condition and treatment goals so he can determine whether a tooth-colored dental filling is right for you. In the case the decay is too large, he may recommend an inlay or onlay. If you suffer from bruxism, you should also discuss treatment options since chronic teeth grinding can damage the restoration.
The procedure to place tooth-colored fillings is quick, easy, and relatively pain-free. First, you will receive a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort during the treatment. After Dr. Huang has removed decayed tissue from the tooth, he will gently etch its surface to create a strong bonding surface. He will then place the composite into the cavity, precisely layering the material, and smooth it for a natural look. The shade of the filling will be chosen to closely match the rest of your teeth.
Unless you received sedation, you can immediately return to work or other activities. You may feel slight tenderness as the numbing medicine wears off. Be sure to avoid eating any hard or sticky foods for at least one day following treatment. If you experience lingering discomfort, be sure to contact our practice.
Typically, tooth-colored fillings last five to 10 years with proper care. To ensure long-lasting results, it is important to:
- Brush twice a day and floss once daily
- Use anti-bacterial mouthwash that does not contain alcohol, as this may weaken the filling
- Avoid bad habits that can place undue stress on your teeth, such as chewing ice or opening packages with your teeth
Lastly, you should schedule routine checkups and cleanings with Dr. Huang. During each examination, he will monitor the condition of the filling and recommend a new restoration, if necessary.
If you have been diagnosed with a cavity, a filling is a simple and affordable treatment to protect against further decay. And with advances in dental materials, your restoration can provide strength without detracting from your smile. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, contact our office today.