We all know that going to the dentist is not always a walk in the park. You wait anxiously for the dentist to come back and tell you that you are cavity free, but that is not always the case. Sometimes cavities arise and when that happens, you are going to need to get a filling. Knowing what causes cavities, how to fix them, and how to maintain a healthy smile afterwards will help to make the process of getting a filling much easier.
How Do We Get Cavities?
A cavity is a hole in your tooth that can grow bigger over time and it develops when a tooth decays or breaks down. There are a few different things that can cause a cavity but the most common is a build-up of plaque on your teeth. When the plaque sits on your teeth and does not get cleaned off or removed that causes a breakdown of the enamel (outer coating of the tooth) and a hole, or cavity, is formed.
How Do We Fix Cavities?
Usually your dentist will recommend a composite filling. These fillings are more discrete, safer and a more natural alternative for repairing cavities in children and tweens. Adults love them too because they are more aesthetically appealing and are virtually invisible on the tooth.
What Are The Advantages/ Benefits for Composite Fillings?
- Composite fillings look natural and mimic the color of a tooth. They also can be placed on the anterior teeth (Front teeth).
- These fillings do not require as much drilling or cutting of the tooth because the resin material can flow into smaller places within the tooth structure.
- They are more natural and healthier than the alternatives.
- They do not corrode.
- They bond well to the tooth structure and support the remaining tooth to help prevent breakage and damage.
How to Keep a Healthy Smile after Fillings?
Once your child, tween, or even you get your fillings you want to make sure to continue to take care of your teeth, and the new filling. This will ensure that no damage is done to the filling and will help prevent any more cavities.
- Avoid extremely hot or cold temperatures for a while as your tooth and filling will be sensitive. If sensitivity persists call your dentist.
- Brush your teeth and floss daily as this will make your filling last as long as possible.
- If instructed by your dentist, use special fluoride gel for cleaning your teeth and filling.
- Avoid sticky or chewy candy as this can pull on the filling and cause damage.
We know it is not fun, but knowing how to prevent cavities in your children or tween will help to avoid it in the future. Remember to always brush, floss, and visit your dentist regularly so that problems can be detected early on.