The Popularity of White Dental Fillings
The dental filling is one of the most common dental restorations today, and has been for over a century and a half. Today, dental fillings are crafted to do more than just restore a compromised tooth; they’re often designed to blend in perfectly with a tooth’s natural color to keep the restoration discreet. In recent years, composite resin has become a staple of many conservative dental procedures, from cosmetic bonding to tooth-colored dental fillings. Austin dentist, Dr. Steven Van Wicklen, has extensive experience restoring and improving patients’ smiles, and often utilizes composite resin in place of traditional metal amalgam fillings.
Tooth Decay, Cavities, and Dental Fillings
Tooth decay is a bacterial infection that eats away at a tooth’s structure once it gains a hold. The infection results in small holes (called cavities) that grow larger with neglect. Considering the fact that tooth decay affects over 90% of adults in the United States over the age of 65, there’s a good chance that you or someone you know has had at least one dental filling placed in the past. As a progressive disease, tooth decay must first be treated by removing the infection to prevent it from spreading, which can often leave the tooth structurally weak. Replacing the removed tooth tissue helps seal the interior from bacteria and future infection, and reinforce the weak tooth against the pressures of biting and chewing.
Reinventing the Dental Filling
Traditionally, metal amalgam has been the material of choice for patients who require a strong and affordable dental restoration. Amalgam is a mixture of a powdered alloy containing silver, zinc, tin, and copper, combined with liquid mercury. Though strong, the metal used can be conspicuous when you speak, smile, laugh, or open your mouth, diminishing your confidence in your newly-restored tooth. Aside from being tinted to match a tooth’s specific color, tooth-colored fillings can also be bonded to the tooth’s structure to provide a more effective seal than amalgam, which can expand and contract with changes in temperature.
About Dr. Steven Van Wicklen:
Since 1985, Dr. Steven Van Wicklen has been providing expert cosmetic and restorative dentistry services to patients and families in Austin, Round Rock, Pflugerville, Bastrop, Bee Cave, Cedar Park, and all surrounding communities. To schedule your next dental consultation, call our office today at (512) 448-3131.