Filling cavities to protect your smile
The American Dental Association estimates that 91 percent of Americans over the age of 20 have had a cavity at some point in their lives. Cavities are common, and while the news that you have a cavity may inspire anxiety, the procedure to clean out and fill a cavity is relatively simple.
The process entails numbing the teeth and gums around the cavity, cleaning out the bacteria from within the cavity, and then replacing the cavity with a filling material. You may experience a degree of discomfort afterward, but any pain or sensitivity will normally subside.
Dental fillings are most commonly used to address a tooth cavity but can also be used to repair damage to a tooth or to restore part of a broken tooth.
Stopping the spread of tooth decay
Children are born without cavities, but the risk for tooth decay follows them for the rest of their lives. Tooth decay is a disease that damages and breaks down teeth. It starts as a type of bacteria called plaque. When paired with the sugar from a food or drink, that plaque can create an acid that attacks the enamel of your teeth, causing decay and creating a cavity.
If untreated, tooth decay can lead to pain, infection, and even the loss of a tooth or teeth. Fillings are an effective treatment to stop tooth decay, but prevention is your first line of defense. Daily oral hygiene is critical to keeping your teeth healthy and protecting your smile.
If you think you or a member of your family may have a tooth that may require a filling, schedule an appointment with your local Kimball & Beecher office today.