Even in the best of circumstances, dental cavities happen. A chipped tooth decays. Enamel wears thin, and bacteria works its way into tooth structure. Plaque accumulates in the deep grooves of a back tooth.
Fortunately, restorative dentistry has used amalgam fillings for generations to save teeth from further decay and to restore proper bite and tooth function. However, both dentists and their patients have desired a filling material that matches tooth color and requires less removal of healthy tooth structure in order to place a restoration.
Tooth-colored Fillings are Great Options
Enter the tooth-colored filling in Mankato and across the country. Also called “white fillings,” tooth-colored fillings are metal-free and shaded and textured to blend in with a patient’s own tooth color. Made from silicon dioxide (glass) and acrylic, this sturdy composite material fills small to moderately-sized cavities anywhere in the mouth.
Tooth-colored fillings in Mankato work wonderfully well at the front of the mouth in the “smile zone” which shows when an individual opens his or her mouth to speak, smile or laugh. Also, cosmetic dentistry uses composite resin to fill gaps between teeth, small fractures and other imperfections on otherwise healthy teeth.
When Dr. James Kalina discovers decay through visual inspection or digital X-ray, he prepares the tooth surface with a high speed drill and manual instruments. Using the composite, Dr. Kalina removes less tooth enamel than he would if he were were using amalgam.
After the tooth is prepared, Dr. Kalina places the composite resin in the tooth layer by layer. He bonds each layer with a special curing light that hardens the composite and makes it adhere to the tooth surface.
Also, he selects a color which matches the natural shade of the tooth. After layering and sculpting the tooth for size, shape and bite, Dr. Taylor polishes the tooth-colored filling to a high sheen.
Composite resin fillings are durable and stay in place. They last seven to ten years or more with good at-home and in-office oral hygiene.
Your Best Dental Filling
Of course, the best dental filling is no filling at all. Dr. Kalina says to avoid tooth decay as best you can by:
- Brushing twice a day with a quality fluoride toothpaste and soft-bristled brush
- Flossing daily between teeth to remove bacteria-filled plaque
- Drinking plenty of water to wash tooth surfaces and stimulate saliva production
- Eating a low sugar/carb diet with calcium-rich foods and fibrous fruits and vegetables
- Getting semi-annual exams and hygienic cleanings with Dr. Kalina and his staff
Learn All You Can
When you see Dr. Kalina for your semi-annual check-up and professional cleaning, ask him about tooth-colored fillings. He will explain the process and the advantages of this innovative material. Contact James J. Kalina DDS for your next routine dental appointment.