What causes tooth decay?

Tooth decay, also called dental caries or cavities, first begins when acids eat away at the tooth enamel, which is the hard outer layer of the tooth. Acids are formed when you eat sugars and starches and they mix with certain types of bacteria in your mouth. Cavities often go unnoticed when they only affect the enamel, but when they extend into the dentin, which is the next tooth layer, you will experience tooth sensitivity or pain when your tooth is exposed to heat, cold, or acidic substances. This is because the dentin contains tubules that are connected to the nerve-rich pulp center of the tooth.

What is a filling?

A filling is a dental restoration that fills the hole left by a cavity. Dr. Truong only uses natural-looking composite resin for fillings. Unlike older amalgam fillings, composite resin fills in not just the cavity but also the porous surface of the tooth, which provides added strength and protection to the tooth structure. In addition to restoring tooth function, your filling will be esthetically pleasing as the resin material is tinted to match your natural teeth.

How are fillings placed?

Filling placement begins with Dr. Truong numbing the area around your tooth with a local anesthetic. Once you are comfortable, your dentist will remove the decay from your tooth using a special dental instrument. After the space is prepared, the composite resin is placed in the hole and sculpted to restore optimal tooth shape. The soft filling material is then hardened under a curing light, after which your dentist will make necessary adjustments to its shape, then polish the filling for a smooth finish. When you walk out of our office with your new restoration, you can confidently show off your smile without anyone detecting your dental work.

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