If you’re prone to dental decay or you’ve been suffering from toothache or sensitivity recently, it’s a good idea to see your dentist. We are here to help relieve your pain and protect your teeth from dental damage and decay. Prevention is always better than cure, so call now and arrange your appointment.
What causes decay?
Decay is caused by harmful bacteria in the mouth, which produce acids that attack and wear away the enamel and irritate the gums. As the enamel becomes worn, there is a chance that the bacteria can penetrate the protective surface and infect the living tissue of the tooth, which is found in the dentin layer beneath the enamel.
Decay is usually the result of poor oral hygiene. If you neglect daily cleaning and flossing, there is a high risk of plaque forming; plaque is a sticky film made of bacteria, saliva and bits of food. Plaque is the main risk factor for gum disease and cavities. Decay is also associated with a poor diet and the risk is increased by consumption of sugary and acidic foods and drinks.
What can be done for decay?
If you have a cavity, the usual course of action is to fill the tooth. This involves placing a filling inside the cavity. Fillings make your tooth stronger and during the procedure, we will also remove decayed tissue from the tooth, which will help to lower the risk of the infection spreading. Often, fillings are a means of stopping the bacteria in their tracks, which saves infection further down the line and prevents the need for more intensive treatment.
The procedure to fill a tooth is nothing to worry or be scared about; we will numb your tooth completely before we start to make sure that you don’t feel any pain and usually, the procedure is complete within an hour. Before the filling is placed inside the cavity, the cavity is cleaned thoroughly to remove bacteria and get rid of the decayed tissue. Once the hole is clear and clean, bonding agent is applied to the tooth structure and filling material is placed inside and moulded to fit the cavity. In the case of dental composite, which is used to create white fillings, the composite is like putty in consistency so it can be shaped; once it is in the right place, it is then set using a curing light. Once the filling is hard, any final adjustments are made to ensure the filling fits perfectly and you’ll then be free to go!