Fillings and crowns play an important role in repairing your teeth. There are many parts of your teeth that can become injured or infected. It is important that we use the right dental treatments when this happens. Regular checkups help us track your teeth over time and watch for emerging issues. During regular visits, we can examine your smile. From the exam, we will inform you when fillings or crowns are necessary.
Fillings replace the holes in your teeth created from tooth decay.
Our mouths host a large number of bacteria, especially for young children. This bacteria hides in the pockets of our mouths and gathers on the surface of teeth. The bacteria comes in the form of plaque and tartar. Bacteria interacts with what we drink and eat and produces acid. This damages and decays teeth over time.
Regular cleanings and strong dental hygiene are critical to reduce bacteria. Good dental hygiene includes brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash twice a day. Bacteria will produce cavities if allowed to stay built up for long enough. For a dental cavity, Dr. Luker will drill and then replaced with fillings. A dental filling creates a barrier against a more severe infection inside your teeth.
The three most common types of fillings are:
- Silver fillings (amalgams). long lasting, inexpensive metal composites that include mercury
- Gold fillings. expensive, long lasting fillings like amalgams but without mercury
- Tooth-colored (white) fillings. Composite resin fillings that are less durable than metal. Yet, they match the color of your teeth and form a strong seals at the edges of the drill sites
Your dentist will drill the cavity, after giving you local or general anesthetic. Then he will place the filling in the same visit. Your dentist will review the filling options with you before the procedure. The dental team will help you determine the right type based on your preferences.
Crowns are an excellent option. When a tooth has experienced great amounts of decay, breakage, or after a root canal. After a root canal, Dr. Luker adds a crown to add strength to the tooth. This will ensure you are able to maintain a strong bite and protect the remaining tooth’s health. This is especially the case in back molars.
With restorative crowns the pulp on the inside of the tooth is still healthy and not infected. You may have significant tooth decay in the enamel. You can even have cracks or chips from injuries that are weakening the tooth. In such cases, we may recommend a crown. This is a way to protect the healthy parts of the teeth.
Crowns come in different materials. These materials include gold, porcelain, metal, ceramic, and other newer materials. We can help you understand the options available and the pros and cons of each. The type of material you choose will depend on the location of the crown.
Unlike fillings, crowns are place in a few visits. In your first visit, Dr. Luker will file down the tooth and a temporary crown caps the crown. We scan your tooth to get the right specifications for the size and shape of the crown to match your smile and bite. It takes several weeks for the permanent crown to arrive. Once it arrives, you can return for your second appointment. In this appointment, Dr. Luker will bond the permeant tooth in place.
If you have dental decay, a dental crown or filling may be right for you. For more information about dental crowns and fillings, call our office. We look forward to speaking with you.