When you visit for a check-up, your Mullan Gallagher dentist will assess the surface of your teeth, looking for signs of decay. They will let you know if they see anything that might require treatment. By removing the decay, sealing the cavity and restoring the tooth, your dentist prevents bacteria from getting in any further and preserving your tooth in the least invasive way. A small filling is a lasting preventative solution that far outweighs a root canal treatment, which can be the result of extensive decay.
We use several filling materials and your Mullan Gallagher dentist will help you choose the most appropriate one
What is tooth decay?
Tooth decay occurs when we eat sugary foods too often and the acid produced from plaque dissolves your enamel. If this happens frequently, the acid can create a hole in your tooth. Left untreated this hole becomes bigger and eventually affects the nerve of your tooth causing a toothache
How do I know I have tooth decay?
- Early tooth decay does not usually cause any pain, it can be spotted by your Mullan Gallagher dentist and restored before it spreads and causes symptoms.
- Established tooth decay can cause toothache – either continuous pain keeping you awake or occasional sharp pain without an obvious cause
- Decay may cause tooth sensitivity where you feel tenderness or pain when eating or drinking something hot, cold or sweet
- You may see grey, brown or black spots appearing on your teeth
- Dental decay may causebad breath
- Decay can cause an unpleasant taste in your mouth
What kind of fillings are available?
There are a number of different materials that can be used to fill a hole in your tooth, your Mullan Gallagher dentist will discuss with you the options available and advise on the most suitable material for you and your teeth.
- Composite resin fillings. Composite fillings are tooth coloured and made from a resin base to which powdered glass, quartz, silica or other ceramic particles. Composite fillings bond to and strengthen weakened teeth, they come in a wide range of colours to match your natural tooth colour, making the filling virtually invisible.
- Porcelain fillings. Porcelain fillings are referred to as onlays or inlays, and are custom-made in a dental laboratory and then fitted to your teeth. They boast a similar durability to that of gold fillings, but look more more natural
- Glass ionomer.Glass ionomer fillings are tooth coloured and form a chemical link with the tooth they usually release fluoride, which helps to prevent further tooth decay. This type of filling can be weak and because of this, they are usually only used on baby teeth and ‘non-biting’ surfaces such as around the ‘necks’ of the teeth. Little preparation is needed as the filling bonds directly to the tooth.
- Silver (amalgam) fillings.Silver fillings are also durable, they are made by combining mercury and a silver alloy (50% mercury, 35% silver, and 15% tin, copper and other metals)they are durable but do not bond to teeth and due to their noticeable colour, are mostly used for treating the back teeth.
Should you require a filling, your Mullan Gallagher dentist will discuss with you the different options available and advise on the most suitable material for you and your teeth.
When was your last check up? Contact Mullan Gallagher Dental Care today to book your next one.