Types of Dental Fillings in Houston
Tooth decay begins with a cavity. The cavity creates an access hole to the internal parts of the tooth, exposing it to further damage. This damage can cause a lot of pain and discomfort, including jaw pain. It is why a Houston dentist will insist on having your cavities filled before the decay process is far much advanced. Even then, very few people know about their options when it comes to tooth fillings and managing dental decay.
What Are Dental Fillings?
They are materials used in dentistry to fill a tooth that has suffered decay. Usually, dental filling procedures involve removing the decayed part of a tooth, then filling it with foreign material. Fillings are used to reinforce the strength of a damaged tooth, while still closing up any access holes caused by dental cavities.
Dentists often advocate for frequent dental check-ups because they allow them to find cavities in their early stages. The idea is to make sure that your natural tooth is salvageable, so you don’t have to extract it.
Different Types of Dental Fillings
The types of dental fillings feature different materials that can befit the various needs of patients. Over the years, more materials have been discovered as resourceful for dental works, including dental filling procedures. The variety of tooth fillings include:
- Gold fillings – most patients prefer gold fillings because of the worth of gold material. They feature gold metal that is used to fill the damaged tooth. The cost of gold fillings is high, given the value of gold in the market. Much as the gold material stands out on teeth, some patients still consider this a cosmetically appealing look. One other advantage of gold fillings is that they feature a sturdy material that can offer ample support even for the back teeth.
- Amalgams of silver fillings – they feature silver material. Still, the silver material is not used independently in developing these fillings. Ideally, they feature mercury mixed with silver, tin, zinc, and copper. They are the most common types of dental fillings in dentistry because they are fairly affordable for patients. The materials are also sturdy enough to withstand the pressure of chewing for back teeth. However, the color of these tooth fillings is not quite appealing, which is the downside for amalgams. Other than that, some patients can get an infection following silver filling installation because of an allergic reaction to the metal alloys in these types of dental fillings.
- Tooth-colored composites – they are best suited for the front teeth, especially because of their cosmetic advantage. They can be matched to the exact shade of color of your natural teeth. They, however, can be very pricey, sometimes going up to double the cost of silver fillings. The best part is that tooth-colored composites, through the dental bonding process, are versatile. They can be used for many other tooth restoration procedures other than filling a decayed tooth. Such includes repairing chipped, cracked, broken, or worn teeth.
- Ceramics – this is also another type of filling that can be used for cosmetic dentistry. The filling s are tooth-colored and they feature a porcelain material. Their costs can be high, closely rivaling the gold fillings. The good news is that you will get the value for your money, given that they last more than 15 years, especially with good care.
- Glass ionomer – this distinct dental filling features a special type of glass combined with acrylic. The delicate nature of the fillings makes them more suited for filling decayed teeth of children more than adults. They are also used for filling the areas of teeth below the gum line. These tooth fillings are unique because they continue to reinforce the strength of teeth. They usually release fluoride on the teeth of the patient to protect the structure from further decay. It is why they are very critical for young children who are more likely to get dental cavities than adults. These fillings are, however expensive. Their costs are similar to those of composite dental fillings. Their service is not long-lived, as glass ionomer fillings can last up to 5 years, or less.