What To Expect During A Filling Treatment 

21 / 08 / 2023

Dental fillings are a relatively common treatment that are required when a cavity or tooth decay has damaged a tooth or teeth. The most common reason for fillings is lack of proper oral hygiene that, as mentioned, has resulted in cavities or tooth decay. When a dentist finds teeth in poor condition, they may recommend filling treatment to ensure that the problem does not become worse. If you require filling treatment you will undoubtedly want to know what to expect and what is involved with the procedure. We discuss what to expect during a filling treatment below. 

Preparing for Filling Treatment 

Before a dental filling treatment, you should also brush your teeth properly and floss to remove any food detritus from your mouth. You should also inform your dentist about any medications that you are taking that may mix unexpectedly with the anesthetic delivered during treatment. 

Local Anesthesia 

Your filling treatment will begin with the application of local anesthesia that will numb the mouth and prevent you from feeling any pain as the decaying tooth matter is removed and the filling is affixed. The dentist will open your mouth with a clamp and, using a fine needle, inject anesthetic into your gum near the site of the filling. You will feel a sharp sting and within minutes you will lose all feeling in your mouth. 

Tooth Preparation 

Following application of local anesthetic, the dentist will use a small drill to extract the decaying tooth tissue at the site of the filling. As during injection of anesthetic, your mouth will be held open with a clamp to give the dentist greater visibility and ensure they can use both hands without encumberment. The drill will spin very rapidly and excavate the unhealthy tooth tissue so that the filling can be applied. 

Placing the Filling 

After the decaying tooth matter has been removed, your dentist will use one of several types of material to plug the hole left behind. Amalgam, composite or ceramic materials can all be used to the same effect to create a filling. Your dentist will affix a lump of your chosen material to the hole left by their drilling using extremely durable dental glue. After the material has been affixed to the tooth, the dentist will use another drill to contour the filling material into the same shape as your other teeth. The filling will then be smoothed and polished to give it an appealing aesthetic. 

Long-Term Maintenance 

Fillings usually last between fifteen and twenty years without any maintenance, sometimes even longer. After your filling treatment has been completed, you must exercise a regular regimen of brushing and flossing to ensure that your oral health remains in good condition and the filling stays clean. Regular dental check-ups are also fundamentally important because they will allow your dentist to identify any other oral health concerns before they become more severe. 

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Big Smiles Dental does everything in our power to make sure our patients aren’t anxious when attending their appointments. If you have any questions about managing dental anxiety before your next check-up please don’t hesitate to discuss your options with Big Smiles Dental today.