Apart from routine preventative care, cavity treatment is the most commonly needed dental procedure for the majority of dental patients. Our dentists follow the most effective and modern procedures for cavity treatment, and as a result, our patients experience a quick, comfortable treatment process—and a restored tooth that is problem-free, pain-free, and worry-free for years to come.
Understanding Tooth Decay
How do cavities happen? Basically, tooth decay and cavities occur when harmful bacteria damage the hard tooth structure—the tooth’s enamel, dentin, and cementum. Subjected to attack by these bacteria, these tissues progressively break down, resulting in cavities—pitting in the teeth.
Our teeth consist primarily of minerals. In the normal course of daily life, our teeth are in a constant state of back-and-forth demineralization and remineralization as mineral content is repeatedly lost and replaced. When exposed to fermentable carbohydrates – sugars such as sucrose, fructose, and glucose – decay-causing bacteria produce an acid that eats away at the teeth, accelerating the demineralization process and upsetting the demineralization/remineralization balance. The result: Tooth decay, cavities, and discomfort.
Cavity Treatment and Fillings
Cavity treatment is so common as to be almost universal: Very few of us manage to live our entire lives completely without cavities. Unfortunately, contemporary diets and lifestyles often mean that we are much more prone to cavities than we should be. Sodas, carbohydrate and sugar-rich fast foods, and personal schedules that don’t leave time for proper dental hygiene result in cavities which could have been prevented.
When a cavity occurs, prompt treatment helps to safeguard the tooth and prevent further decay. The cavity treatment process consists of removing decay and replacing damaged tooth material with an artificial filling. This serves to protect the surrounding areas against further decay, strengthen the tooth’s structure, and safeguard against eventual loss of the tooth if decay were allowed to continue. Allowed to continue, decay can result in there being too little remaining tooth structure for restorative material to be placed within the tooth. In these cases, a crown may be needed.
Comfort Dental offers the full range of available filling types. Common filling materials are dental amalgam, composite resin, porcelain, and gold. Composite resin and porcelain can both be matched to the color of the patient’s natural teeth, and as such are usually preferred by patients concerned with their appearance. However, composite resins are not as strong or durable as dental amalgam or gold. Many dentists consider the latter to be the only advisable restoration material for posterior areas (“back teeth”) due to the tremendous downward pressure created by chewing.
In all cases, Comfort Dental works to provide cavity treatment that is perfectly suited to the particular tooth, cavity, and patient. Our goal is to provide you with an effective, strong, and durable restoration of your tooth, using precisely the right methods and restorative material to create the best possible outcome. At all stages, we work to make the treatment process calming, comfortable, and pain-free.
What’s the best way to deal with cavities? Never get them in the first place. Fortunately, when properly performed, routine daily dental hygiene measures can make a big difference when it comes to preventing tooth decay.
The most important step you can take to prevent cavities is to brush and floss regularly each day, particularly after meals. This removes dental plaque, the primary cause of tooth decay, as well as making your mouth a less hospitable environment for plaque-causing bacteria to survive in. The right toothbrush, toothpaste, brushing method, and flossing technique can work wonders in reducing your risk of cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease—not to mention the discomfort associated with them.
At Comfort Dental, we consider effective dental education to be a key element in your treatment program. Our skilled hygienists will be happy to explain and demonstrate proper brushing and flossing techniques to you during your visit, and to answer any oral hygiene questions you may have.
As an additional protective measure, dental sealants can help prevent cavities and tooth decay. A dental sealant is a thin protective coating which is applied to the chewing surfaces of molars. The sealant prevents food particles from being trapped within pits and fissures in the tooth. Normally, chewing pressure tends to compress food within these areas, providing plaque bacteria with an opportunity to grow. The sealant helps to deprive these bacteria of these hiding places. We’ll be happy to discuss whether dental sealants might be right for you.
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