At Ridgewood Dental Associates, we believe in the importance of preventative dentistry. With regular cleanings and exams, many of our patients can avoid the need for major dental work. Even when problems occur, we hope to catch them early enough that minor treatment can correct the situation. For most of our patients, tooth decay is the most common problem when it comes to oral health. When tooth decay is caught in its early stages, our Ridgewood restorative dentists can use dental fillings to replace damaged tooth material and protect the tooth from further decay.
Treating Cavities with Dental Fillings
A dental cavity is the most common result of tooth decay. A cavity is a small hole that forms in the tooth as decay eats away and destroys healthy tooth enamel. A dental filling can be used to fill in the tooth to replace the material that has been lost. A dental filling also acts as a barrier to prevent further tooth decay. When cavities are treated early on, our patients can avoid the need for more extensive restorative dental work.
When our patients require treatment with dental fillings, they will have options regarding the type of filling material. Our dentists will discuss these options with you. The type of filling that is best will depend on the patient's personal preferences:
- Amalgam fillings:Also known as metal fillings, these fillings are composed of a combination of metal elements. These fillings are very strong but they are silver in color, which make them a poor choice for the front teeth.
- Composite fillings:These fillings are made of tooth-colored materials (usually a combination of glass and resin) so they are a more attractive option for teeth that are easily visible. These fillings do cost more than metal fillings.
After a material has been chosen, you will be ready for treatment. At the beginning of treatment, one of our dentists will use a local anesthetic to numb the area, ensuring that your treatment is as comfortable as possible. When the area has been numbed, we will clean out the tooth and remove all of the damaged tooth material to prepare it for the dental filling. The filling material will then be applied and the tooth will be sealed to protect it from further decay.
While it is our goal to catch tooth decay in its earliest stages, some patients may come to us with more severe cases of tooth decay. For these patients in Ridgewood, dental crowns may be a more suitable treatment. A dental crown can encase a tooth that has lost a more significant amount of tooth enamel to guard it against further damage and decay.
Schedule an Appointment
If you are looking for quality dental care in the Ridgewood area, schedule an appointment with one of our experienced dentists. Whether you are in need of a general family dentist or have oral health problems that need to be addressed, we can help. We look forward to meeting you and your family.