Tooth Filling in Queens, NY

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1 Different Kinds of Cavity Fillings

Another factor affecting your tooth filling is where the tooth is located. A front tooth filling requires more care, while a back tooth filling is inherently easier to manage. The color and material of the filling also determines its usefulness.

For front tooth filling vs. back tooth filling, you have a choice of materials for the filling. Most dental practices, including CitiDental, no longer rely on the silver-colored amalgam material — not because it isn’t safe, but because there are better tooth filling options available today, including:

  • Composite resin, which has the advantage of being both inexpensive and the same color as your other teeth. Resin fillings are perfect for a front tooth filling. While it’s been popular with dentists and patients alike, this cavity filling material only lasts about five years.
  • Ceramics, which include porcelain fillings. Cosmetic dentists use porcelain in many dental devices, such as crowns and veneers.  In fillings, it’s expensive, but lasts longer than resin. Like resin, though, it’s a good option for a front tooth cavity filling, since it can be color-matched to your existing teeth.
  • Gold filling, which isn’t pure gold, since pure gold is too soft. This material is used less for fillings and more for crowns, onlays and inlays. Gold is a long-lasting, though expensive choice.
2 What Are Dental Inlays and Dental Onlays?

Both onlays and inlays are a type of filling known as an indirect filling. They’re custom-made to fit your teeth. Like crowns, they’re fabricated in a lab and may take several weeks before your dentist has them ready for you. As a result, you must return to your dentist to have the molded filling cemented into place.

The difference between inlays and onlays has to do with how much of your existing tooth structure they cover. A dental inlay covers about the same area of a tooth as a filling does, but the inlay is stronger and lasts longer. A dental onlay protects more of your tooth, extending to what’s called the cusp of your tooth — the biting surface, where the top of one tooth meets the top of its opposite.

Fillings, dental inlays and onlays fill the space left after decay is removed from a tooth. All allow you to keep your natural tooth. Inlays and onlays are more expensive, but are molded from stronger material than tooth fillings. The last resort is a crown, which saves and protects a natural tooth, but it requires that your dentist remove a lot of the tooth’s enamel.

3 Your Tooth Filling Procedure

Your CitiDental professional examines your teeth and gums to find the cavity. You may need an x-ray. If it needs a cavity filling, your dentist numbs the tooth area and gets rid of all the decay. If the resulting pocket is small enough, you just need a filling, and the dentist fills the cavity with the chosen material, after which it’s filed and polished.

If you need an inlay or onlay, your dentist makes an impression of your tooth to send to a lab. You get a temporary filling in the meantime. The lab fabricates the piece and sends it back. When you return to CitiDental, the permanent piece is set and cemented into place.

During this painless process, you can get sedation dentistry, although you rarely need it for such a relatively simple procedure. In the end, your tooth is stronger than before, but you still need to take care of it — and the rest of your teeth — to maintain your dental health.

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