Treating cavities is done with the use of composite fillings. Dr. Knight removes the decayed portion of the tooth and fills it with a substance to seal off the tooth. The procedure is known as a “filling” and dentists often use a variety of materials to perform this treatment. The most common are composite fillings and silver amalgam fillings, though our practice prefers the use of composite because it is more aesthetic and does not expand and contract with temperature changes as silver amalgam fillings do.
A composite filling is sometimes referred to as a “tooth colored filling” because the material closely matches the color of the existing tooth enamel. Composite fillings are durable and best used for small to medium cavities. The procedure requires the removal of less tooth structure than a silver amalgam filling and is typically used on the anterior teeth—the teeth that are highly visible in the front of the mouth.
A composite filling can be used for a variety of reasons. They can be used for decayed teeth, chipped teeth, broken teeth, or even for disguising gaps between teeth.
How it’s done
The area where the filling will be placed is numbed with a local anesthetic. Decayed portions are removed by Dr. Knight and then a special substance is applied to enlarge the pores of the tooth enamel for a better bond. The material is administered into the tooth in thin layers and is hardened and cured with a special light. The filling is completed with a file and polish for a beautiful appearance.