Cavities & Fillings
A cavity is essentially a small hole on the tooth that develops when the tooth decays from improper oral hygiene. We check for cavities in the deep nooks and grooves of the back teeth with our laser cavity finder, and by observing the color of the groove. In simplistic terms, on teeth, white is good and black is bad. To check for cavities between the back teeth, we use bitewing x-rays.
If not treated, the cavity will grow larger, deeper and cause more discomfort. We check for cavities during your continuing care/routine teeth cleaning visits. Our goal is to detect and treat any cavity when it is small. The smaller it is when we get to it, the easier it is to fix, the smaller the filling will be and the stronger your tooth will remain.
To treat a cavity you will need a filling. During this easy procedure, Dr. Miller will remove the decayed portion of the tooth to ensure the decay doesn’t return and will “fill” that area of the tooth so it looks, feels and acts as any other tooth in your mouth.
When you need a small filling but don’t want ugly silver in your teeth, direct resin or white fillings are the way to go. Their most obvious advantage is beauty – a well-done white filling can be indistinguishable from the natural tooth. However, they have many other advantages. White fillings can change the appearance of teeth, strengthen teeth, and more conservatively treat teeth – all things that silver fillings cannot do.
Dr. Miller has seen small tooth colored fillings that he has done last more than 33+ years!
White / Tooth Colored Fillings
White/tooth colored fillings are bonded to tooth structure – this means that they actually integrate with the tooth, thereby sealing the gap between tooth and filling and adding their strength to the tooth. This allows for the more varied uses of resin beyond just regular fillings – like bonding; placing thin layers over front teeth to change their color, shape or general appearance; or repairing small chips or fractures in teeth; or even being placed in the grooves of teeth to prevent decay from ever occurring (using Sealants). Bonded white fillings are an extremely beautiful advance in the creation of fantastic and healthy smiles.