Can A Cosmetic Dentist Do Fillings?
This is a question that actually gets asked quite a bit, and the answer is simple as stated yes, they sure can. In fact, it has become more popular for cosmetic dentists in Houston to do fillings, because fillings have advanced in the materials and the way they are created quite a bit.
The Secret Is Out: Fillings Can Help Create That Perfect Smile
You might think some people have perfect smiles with pearly whites. What you don’t realize is many of those people may actually have one or more fillings but good luck spotting them. That’s because fillings have benefited from the shift towards cosmetic dentistry in Houston and all over the country when it comes to routine dental procedures.
In order to prevent the spread of tooth decay that comes with cavities, they are treated with a dental procedure known as a filling. You may now know however that what you might think of a filling in your mind, may not always be what you think. While traditional fillings were made from a combination of metals like mercury and tin, today’s cosmetic fillings are made from a tooth-like composite resin, which gives them a more natural look and feel. But aside from matching the color of your teeth, cosmetic fillings often involve more than just their appearance.
As mentioned, fillings used to be an eyesore because they were made of silver that would often stain teeth, or even cause a mild allergic reaction in some patients. For decades in fact, cosmetic fillings have been available but they stuck out like a sore thumb because of the materials they were comprised of.
But now, cosmetic fillings are being created out of materials other than silver materials that can blend in, feel more natural, and not cause an allergic reaction. If you find yourself needing fillings, consider how far cosmetic fillings have advanced.
Modern Cosmetic Fillings
The early version tooth colored fillings were a far cry from the modern cosmetic fillings of today. Back then, tooth colored fillings were used to help the fillings blend in more, but they were nothing like the advanced fillings we have now.
Although they were tooth colored, they weren’t as durable as silver (amalgam) fillings and didn’t always look that much better. Since they weren’t as durable they also couldn’t be used in areas on a tooth that withstood a lot of pressure because they would crack under that pressure. They also didn’t polish up well and felt nothing like the natural surface of a tooth so they always felt foreign.
Today, cosmetic fillings have benefited in stronger material discoveries that allow fillings to be much more durable and aesthetically look and feel no different than your natural tooth. Today’s tooth-colored fillings can also be used on molars due to their increased durability, something that was not possible in the past.
The Magic Of Composite Material
Today’s tooth colored cosmetic fillings are made from a mixture of plastic and either ceramic or glass to form the resin used in modern fillings. Cured using a special UV light technique, the fillings become extremely hardened and durable in this process. It is actually a layered process though, each layer of the resin is laid down on the tooth, then cured, then another layer is put down and repeated until the cavity is filled. Then the excess composite material is removed and the filling is contoured to match your tooth and then polished to match.
Benefits Of Modern Cosmetic Fillings
If you are at least 21 years of age, the chances are that you have had a cavity at some point in your life. In fact, adults that have never had a cavity are in the minority. Over 90% percent of adults ages 20 thru 64 have had a cavity at some point in their life. That should at least give you some comfort in knowing that you’re not alone if you are suffering from a cavity and you don’t have to let it get worse. There are some great benefits to be found in today’s modern cosmetic fillings.
Cosmetic Fillings Bond to Your Teeth
When a traditional metal filling (amalgam filling) is used to treat a cavity it never actually becomes one with your tooth and often, people have to return to the dentist to replace a filling that has fallen out.
You can visualize it like fixing a pothole. Sure, you can fill a pothole with some sticky compacted dirt and gravel and the hole will be “filled.” But over time, because nothing ever bonds to the surrounding asphalt, that “filling” will wear out. Rain, constant traffic and wind will erode the material inside and eventually, the hole is back, and often leads to more cracks and damage.
However, when properly fixed with new asphalt that bonds to the surrounding undamaged asphalt, that pothole is now permanently filled and has become one piece of asphalt vs. just a “filling.”
The same principle applies to filling a cavity. In traditional fillings, the dentist then blends a powdered alloy with liquid mercury that creates an amalgam putty substance. This soft, pliable putty is stuffed into the prepped cavity and cures rapidly to create the filling, but it never bonds to your tooth.
Cosmetic fillings, on the other hand, are not putty at all, in fact, they are a resin material that is literally painted on to the cavity surface in layers until it is filled in completely. This resin is then ground down a bit to remove any rough surface anomalies then polished to complete the look. The resin material bonds to your teeth and matches the color of your teeth. It cannot come loose like traditional fillings since it is now a part of your natural tooth.
Most of Your Healthy Tooth Is Saved with Cosmetic Fillings
Since amalgam fillings have to be packed into a cavity in a particular way to fit, the tooth actually has to be drilled into in order to make enough room. This process ends up drilling out a significant portion of healthy tooth material. Cosmetic fillings don’t require any removal of your healthy tooth. This makes cosmetic fillings a perfect solution for minor cavities as well as major ones.
Cosmetic Fillings Are Safe
Amalgam fillings contain a combination of metals, but as we’re sure you likely raised your eyebrows at one metal in particular that we mentioned, mercury. Yes, amalgam fillings contain mercury, and although it is in very low levels, which has been deemed safe by the FDA in patients over the age of 6; it’s still not a metal you want to put in your body if you can avoid it.
This is because while at very low levels it may indeed be safe, it can cause allergic reactions to some patients and some the reaction can be quite serious. Cosmetic fillings, however, contain no mercury or metal at all and are completely bio-compatible.
Cosmetic Fillings Are Almost Invisible
One of the most popular advantages of cosmetic feelings is that they are nearly indistinguishable from your tooth. Since they are composed of a resin that matches the color of your tooth and also feels like a natural tooth, one can hardly tell you have fillings. This gives you a beautiful smile without the dreaded dark spots that come with amalgam fillings.
Best Dental In Richmond Can Brighten Your Smile With Cosmetic Fillings
Cosmetic fillings from Best Dental in Richmond allow you to achieve that perfect smile and not let it be ruined by a few minor cavities. While traditional silver fillings are cheaper, they are not nearly as safe, stick out like a sore thumb and can cause allergic reactions.
If you want to avoid all of that hassle and discomfort; composite cosmetic fillings are the choice for you.
Contact us today to get your smile back with cosmetic fillings from Best Dental. We will have you smiling again in no time!