Understanding tooth decay
Dental decay is by far the most common cause for anyone requiring a dental filling. Tooth decay can form because of a range of factors, including an unhealthy diet, poor at-home dental care habits and lack of attendance for routine dental check-ups. Tooth decay commonly presents in these three ways, all of which can be effectively treated with a tooth filling, assuming the damage is not already too widespread:
Tooth fillings in Pennant Hills
Do I need a dental filling?
The best way to determine whether you need a filling is by visiting Pennant Hills Dental Centre for a check-up. Tooth decay is difficult to see with the naked eye. It often only becomes visible once it has progressed significantly, by which stage you may require more than a filling. Your dentist can use dental x-rays to identify early signs of decay present between your teeth and provide you with the most effective treatment without delay.
If you experience any of the following symptoms, you may need a filling and it’s a good idea to seek dental care as soon as you can:
- Persistent toothache
- Sharp pains in your tooth
- Sensitivity when brushing your teeth
- Sensitivity when consuming hot or cold food or drinks
- A darkening area on your tooth
- A visible hole in your tooth
What to expect when having a dental filling?
Dental fillings are a routine procedure that is straightforward and nothing for you to be worried about. At Pennant Hills Dental Centre, we take extra special and attentive care during every dental treatment we perform. Our dental practice only makes use of the highest quality materials and the latest in dental technology and techniques to ensure patient care, comfort and great results.
The process for having a filling may differ slightly between patients, but you can generally expect it to take between 30 to 90 minutes and look something like this:
- Before any part of the procedure begins, your dentist will administer local anaesthetic to the area, which will be totally numb in a matter of minutes.
- Once the area is numb and you’re feeling relaxed, your dentist will begin to gently remove the decay and give your tooth a thorough clean.
- Your tooth is now ready for filling with a special material that is then set, almost instantly, with light.
- Next, your dentist will do a few bite checks to make any final adjustments to your filling for your comfort.
- Finally, your dentist will polish your filling for a natural-feeling finish.
Preventing tooth decay
Tooth decay is one of the most common dental health issues around the world. Luckily, preventing tooth decay is doable. Here are some top tips from our family dentists on how to maintain good oral health and avoid decay and invasive dental treatments:
When you know the root cause of a problem, it can be a lot easier to solve. Our lifestyles and habits are major contributing factors to our oral health. It’s important to recognise the elements of your lifestyle or certain things that you do that negatively affect your oral health so you can take appropriate action. Some questions you may ask yourself are, do I brush my teeth for long enough? Do I floss regularly enough? Do I consume a lot of acidic food? Am I grinding my teeth through the night? Does poor oral health run in the family? Knowing the answers to questions like these can help you avoid decay by following the best dental care plan for your needs.
A primary cause of tooth decay is food debris and nasty bacteria that can get trapped and linger between teeth. The combination of effective tooth brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and daily flossing can help defend your teeth against decay. You can add an antibacterial mouthwash into your daily at-home dental care regime too for extra measure!
A primary way to dodge tooth decay and any of its adverse effects on your oral health is by having biannual dental checkups and professional teeth cleaning. Professional dental care is key to maintaining optimal dental health, providing elements of dental care you can simply not achieve at home on your own. At Pennant Hills Dental Centre, our dentists have unparalleled knowledge and experience, advanced tools and technology and can deliver the latest in dental techniques to help you maintain a beautiful, healthy smile.
Sugar is a primary culprit when it comes to decay in both adults and children. It reacts with bacteria in your mouth, producing acidity that is particularly harsh on the enamel of your teeth. While it’s unnecessary to cut out sugar altogether, it pays to consume it moderately to avoid decay.
When your mouth is dry, bacteria that cause decay flourish. You may have a dry mouth as a result of medication, a blocked nasal passage or simply from not staying hydrated enough. A great way to ensure your mouth has enough saliva to help rid the surface of your teeth of bacteria is to ensure you drink enough water throughout the day. Not only does staying hydrated positively impact the health of your mouth, but it can also have great general health benefits.