How Do Fillings Work?

When you get a cavity, your dentist will need to provide treatment as soon as possible. Whether due to diet, genetics, or trauma, cavities can cause significant problems if left untreated. Cavities, or caries, are tiny holes in your teeth where acids and bacteria have eaten away the enamel, which is the protective outer layer of your teeth. 

A poor dental health routine or diet can contribute to cavities. For example, if you eat a diet that is high in sugar or acidic, you are more likely to develop cavities. This is because natural bacteria live in your mouth, but your diet can throw it off balance. The bacteria in your mouth feed on the sugar in your diet and turn it into acid. This acid will dissolve your enamel and create cavities. 

It is necessary to have a thorough daily oral health routine to neutralize the acid in your mouth. Without it, you may develop cavities and need to get a filling. However, if you get a cavity, there is no need to worry. Getting a filling is a simple, painless procedure. 

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What Is the Dental Filling Process?

Before your dentist even begins drilling into your tooth, they will numb the area to ensure that you don’t feel any pain during the procedure. Most dentists will apply a numbing gel so that you won’t even feel the injection of the local anesthetic. Once you are unable to feel sensations, your dentist will proceed. 

Using a drill, the dentist will remove the decayed areas of your tooth. As long as the area is not extensive, your dentist will fill your tooth with a filling. If the decay is more severe than expected, your dentist may need to perform a root canal and give you a crown. With a routine filling, your dentist will simply fill your tooth with a composite resin that matches the color of your tooth. 

Once your dentist fills your tooth, they will polish the resin and make sure that your bite sits comfortably. With a composite filling, the filling will need to cure before polishing and finishing your procedure. 

What Are the Complications from a Filling?

You may have some mild pain and discomfort after your procedure because of the drilling, but some over-the-counter NSAIDs or anti-inflammatory medications should be helpful. If you experience other pain, it may be due to your bite. If your teeth do not sit together properly, it can cause some discomfort, but your dentist should be able to fix it quickly and easily. 

After your procedure, you may experience some sensitivity. When your dentist drills into your tooth, it may expose the nerve, which can cause sensitivity. Your gums can also become irritated or inflamed, but this should go away quickly. If not, you should contact your dentist.

There are some symptoms you may experience that should be cause for concern. If you have severe pain or swelling, you may have an infection that needs medical attention. A fever is a symptom of an infection, which requires immediate medical attention. Infections in the mouth can be serious because they can spread throughout the body, including the brain.