Tooth-Colored Composite Fillings in Orlando, FL
Hearing that you have a cavity can be surprising and concerning. You might also visualize an unsightly dark or silver tooth filling in your mouth, which doesn’t add much to your smile.
At Alafaya Center for Cosmetic & Family Dentistry, we’re committed using the most advanced dental materials and technologies along with treatments that enhance your smile, not detract from it.
That’s why we recommend and use tooth-colored composite fillings that look completely natural and strengthen teeth that are weakened by cavities. Thanks to advanced bonding technologies, tooth-colored fillings are aesthetically pleasing and durable.
Since many people still have silver/amalgam fillings in their teeth that have broken or caused fractures in the tooth, Dr. Gary Michaelson also replaces existing silver fillings with tooth-colored (white) fillings.
To learn more about tooth-colored fillings from your trusted Orlando, FL dentist, call Alafaya Dentistry today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Michaelson.
- What Causes Cavities?
- How to Tell If You Have a Cavity
- Benefits of Tooth-Colored Composite Fillings
- Drawbacks of Silver Amalgam Fillings
- Replacing Silver Fillings with Tooth-Colored Fillings
- What to Expect with a Tooth-Colored Filling
- How Do I Take Care of My Tooth-Colored Filling?
- Will My Dental Plan Cover Composite Fillings?
- Learn More About Tooth-Colored Fillings in Orlando, FL
What Causes Cavities?
If you’ve heard that plaque is your teeth’s worst enemy, then you’ve heard right! Plaque is a colorless, sticky substance that leads to cavities. But how does it get there in the first place?
When you consume sugary and starchy foods and drinks, bacteria begin to produce an acid that interacts with the saliva in your mouth. If left on the teeth, this acid turns into plaque, which begins to erode your tooth enamel. The result is tiny holes in your teeth called cavities, or tooth decay.
If we catch cavities early at your six-month dental exam, you may not need a tooth filling at all. But as a cavity progresses, so does the damage to your tooth. An unchecked cavity or gum disease can eventually lead to tooth loss.
The good news is that we can stop the dental decay and protect your tooth from further damage with a tooth-colored composite filling.
To prevent cavities, brush your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and floss once a day to clean out any food particles harboring bacteria. It’s also essential to eat a healthy diet that’s low in sugar.
However, just brushing and flossing isn’t enough to catch hidden plaque and tartar, a harder substance that forms when plaque isn’t removed. We also recommend scheduling twice-yearly teeth exams and cleanings with our top Orlando, FL dentist and hygienist to catch tooth decay and gum disease before they progress.
How to Tell If You Have a Cavity
Unfortunately, cavities are a prevalent dental condition, especially in kids and teenagers. If you have a cavity, you may not know it until the decay has reached inside the tooth, where the nerves are.
The first signs of a cavity are tooth sensitivity, or pain when eating sweets or hot or cold foods. You might also feel pain when you bite down on the tooth. In advanced cavities, the tooth may become discolored and have visible holes.
Benefits of Tooth-Colored Composite Fillings
When patients do have a cavity, they usually don’t want everyone to be able to see their dental filling! But that’s just one reason Dr. Gary Michaelson uses tooth-colored composite fillings. Other advantages are:
- The composite resin material of tooth-colored fillings is designed to bond directly to the surface of the tooth.
- Tooth-colored fillings are effective even when much of the tooth structure has been lost or compromised.
- Unlike silver amalgam fillings, the composite resin material expands and contracts at the same rate as your tooth, minimizing the risk of tooth fracture.
- Of course, our patients also love composite fillings because they are aesthetically pleasing and blend in seamlessly with their natural teeth.
Drawbacks of Silver Amalgam Fillings
For decades, silver/amalgam was the filling of choice for teeth that needed to withstand significant chewing force, such as molars. However, after years of clinical use, we now understand that amalgam teeth fillings have many drawbacks:
- The color of silver fillings detracts from your smile and can get darker over time.
- The outer edge of the metal filling may wear down, break, or become leaky. When this happens, the tooth is no longer protected because it is exposed to cavity-causing bacteria.
- When a tooth has an amalgam filling, the material is simply packed into the prepared space. The filling isn’t really attached to the sides of the tooth, which can cause it to pull away from the tooth eventually.
- Since the metal filling just sits inside the space, it is also prone to expanding and contracting due to temperature changes. Over the years, this subtle movement can cause the tooth to fracture and break.
For all these reasons, Dr. Michaelson has not placed a single amalgam filling in 18 years.
Replacing Silver Fillings with Tooth-Colored Fillings
At Alafaya Center for Cosmetic & Family Dentistry, we recommend replacing old, worn, or defective amalgam fillings to prevent tooth decay and brighten up your smile.
First, Dr. Michaelson will remove the old filling and prepare the tooth. Next, he places the tooth-colored material, curing it with a special light that works in five seconds, as opposed to traditional halogen lights that take over 60 seconds.
Dr. Michaelson will check with you to see how the new tooth surface feels, make sure your bite is comfortable, and then show you the beautiful natural-looking results.
If you’re concerned about an old silver filling or tooth pain, don’t wait! Call our Orlando, FL dental office today to schedule a teeth exam.
What to Expect with a Tooth-Colored Filling
If you have a toothache or gum sensitivity, you may have a cavity. When you visit our dental office, we’ll perform a visual exam and take an x-ray of your teeth to determine how far the cavity has reached through the tooth’s enamel.
If the cavity is in its early stages, we can treat the tooth with a sealant and keep an eye on it at future dental exams. If the cavity has progressed, however, Dr. Michaelson will fill the area with a tooth-colored filling. When decay has reached inside a tooth, it may warrant a root canal first.
Tooth-colored fillings in Orlando, FL look so natural that you may not even be able to tell you have one!
How Do I Take Care of My Tooth-Colored Filling?
The composite resin of a tooth-colored filling is strong and durable. In fact, Dr. Michaelson also uses this same material to repair chipped teeth by shaping the resin before it dries.
Continue your oral hygiene routine, brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and flossing. Since composite fillings can stain, rinse your mouth or brush after consuming blueberries, coffee, tea, or other staining substances.
Will My Dental Plan Cover Composite Fillings?
Whether your insurance covers tooth-colored fillings depends on your plan. Many insurance plans will cover tooth-colored composite fillings for visible teeth. But if not, the plan may cover the filling up to the cost an amalgam filling, with you responsible for the difference.
A member of our dental staff will follow up with your insurance company to be sure you get everything you are entitled to through your policy.
Learn More About Tooth-Colored Fillings in Orlando, FL
Are you interested in having your silver fillings replaced or learning more about state-of-the-art tooth-colored fillings? Please call our Orlando dental office, and we will be happy to arrange a convenient appointment with Dr. Michaelson.