Dental filling materials are used frequently in dentistry. The material that a dentist selects to fill a tooth may vary depending on the specific dental issues of a particular patient.
Some fillings, such as gutta-percha, a rubbery material derived from a Malaysian tree, are only used in specific circumstances. Gutta-percha is used to fill a tooth after a root canal procedure has been performed. The material replaces the extracted pulp of the tooth, filling the chambers and canals of the hollow structure.
Other filling materials, such as dental bonding material, may be used for a variety of applications. Here are some of the ways that your dentist may use bonding material.
To Fill the Small Cavity of a Tooth
After bacterial acids have dissolved enough tooth material to form a small cavity, the dentist must treat the decayed portion of the tooth to prevent the decay from worsening or spreading. If a cavity is caught in the early stages, the dentist is likely to fill the hole with bonding material after removing any decayed tooth material.
The bonding material, which is made from resin, is white like tooth enamel and is typically difficult to discern in the mouth.
To Cover an Exposed Area of Dentin
Sometimes, due to enamel erosion, a small area of dentin may become exposed. The enamel is the outer layer of tooth material. The layer just below the enamel is called the dentin.
The dentin has a slightly more yellow appearance than the tooth enamel and contains tubules that hold the dental nerves. If the dentin is left exposed, the nerves may become inflamed causing an increase in pain and dental sensitivity. Additionally, since the dentin is softer than the enamel, it is more susceptible to structural damage.
The dental provider can place bonding material over the exposed dentin to protect it. To apply the pliable material, the dentist simply presses it into place before hardening it using a curing light.
To Fill a Superficial Crack in a Tooth
Dental bonding material can also be used to fill areas of superficial damage, such as cracks. Some teeth may incur small cracks that are not deep enough to necessitate the application of a dental crown.
To help fill the cracks and prevent them from worsening, the dentist may cover them with bonding material.
To learn more about dental bonding material and other types of fillings, schedule a consultation with a dental office in your area, such as Dental Care Associates.
I grew up in a home with parents who did not insist on good dental hygiene. By the time I was old enough to know better, some damage had already been done. I had many cavities, crooked teeth, and some discoloration on my teeth. I knew it would not be easy to take my smile from where it was to where it is today, but I was determined to finally have nice teeth. I visited a dentist who was very nice and never judged me. We made a dental plan together. Spreading the procedures out over time made it much easier to afford them. I now have almost perfect teeth after all that hard work! I created this blog to help others who have dental problems that stem from bad childhood habits know there is hope! It is never too late to start seeing the dentist!