Cosmetic Dentists & General Dentistry located in Laurel Heights, San Francisco, CA
Close to 91% of American adults have experienced cavities at least once in their lives. At Pastel Dental in San Francisco, California, Alex Pastel, DDS, and Leah Life, DDS, offer effective cavity-filling treatments to restore the health of your teeth and leave you cavity-free. If you think you might have a cavity and want to learn more about how to fix it, schedule an appointment at the Laurel Heights office by phone or by using the easy online booking tool.
Fillings Q & A
What is the purpose of a dental filling?
If your tooth has been damaged by decay, the team at Pastel Dental can recommend various types of fillings to restore your tooth's integrity, function, and health. The more severe the decay, the more likely it is that you’re suffering from a cavity.
Cavities refer to when the enamel has softened and caused a hole to emerge on the surface of your tooth. You may have a cavity if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Continuous and unprovoked toothache
- Increased tooth sensitivity
- Holes or pits in your teeth
Cavity fillings allow your dentist to restore the shape of your tooth and eliminate any decay.
How is a filling applied?
During your appointment at Pastel Dental, your dentist first starts by removing any decay in the affected tooth and cleans out the treatment site using special dental tools.
Once the area has been cleaned, your dentist typically fills the cavity space with a tooth-colored filling to seal the area.
How do I know which filling material to get?
Your dentist can suggest a variety of tooth filling options, including composite resins, porcelain, and amalgam.
When you come in for your appointment, your dentist evaluates the following factors before recommending a material:
- Location of the cavity
- Tooth function
- Amount of decay in the tooth
- Your budget
- Your allergies to various substances
Once your dentist has considered these factors, you can proceed with your cavity-filling treatment.
What are the differences in filling materials?
Each filling material has its own set of advantages:
Composite resin fillings are designed to match the shade of your natural teeth, so you won’t be able to tell which tooth had a cavity. Composite resin fillings are known to last up to 10 years but can stain over time if not taken care of properly.
Amalgam fillings are typically made from a combination of metals, including a powder alloy made from silver, tin, copper, and liquid mercury. These types of fillings are the most cost-effective, but they’re also the most visible.
Porcelain fillings are custom-made and bonded to your teeth. Just like composite resin fillings, porcelain fillings match your natural teeth, but they’re much more effective against stains.
If you think you have a cavity and want to learn more about your treatment options, get in touch with the office today by phone or book online.