Esthetic dentistry can provide a middle ground between the health-focused care of general dentistry and the appearance-focused improvements of cosmetic dentistry. While the closely related field of cosmetic dentistry can be a good option for making visible or dramatic changes, an esthetic approach may be recommended for patients who primarily want to maintain a healthy…
Non-Invasive Esthetic Dentistry Cavity Treatment
It can be frustrating to discover during a routine dental exam that a cavity has developed, but repairing the decay through esthetic dentistry is a simple solution. In a minimally invasive procedure, the tooth can safely be restored to a strong, functioning component of the mouth. These tooth-colored fillings are often preferred over traditional metal amalgam for the excellent quality of materials and natural color. These fillings also perform much like the natural properties of the tooth.
Cavity treatment options
Getting a filling is a common dental treatment for cavities. A silver-colored amalgam can be used for repair, but though a metal filling is adequate for restoration, the unnatural color does little for the appearance of the mouth. As well, some patients can experience itching or irritation if they have sensitive teeth or allergies. These fillings also require removing portions of the healthy tooth in order to make room to secure the metal amalgam. Metal also expands and contracts with temperature changes more quickly than a natural tooth, making it easy for bacteria to build up between the enamel and the filling.
The differences with esthetic treatment
An esthetic filling has the same purpose as a traditional amalgam. The goal is to prevent more serious decay and restore the tooth’s function and appearance. With an esthetic approach, the restoration of the tooth both mimics and tries to recreate the natural look and function of teeth. Preservation of the tooth structure is an important component, as is offering a corrective process that is minimally invasive and long-lasting.
Stresses of traditional cavity filling
Many people do not look forward to spending time in the dentist's chair. Non-invasive procedures, particularly for cavity filling, offer comfortable, stress-free options to restore tooth and gum health. Cavity filling through esthetic dentistry and non-invasive techniques often rely on air abrasion to remove decay and composite filling materials for the correction.
Benefits over traditional fillings
When it comes to appearance, the natural-colored composite materials that fill the tooth are often considered superior to metal fillings. A filling made of natural tooth color is hardly noticeable in the mouth. Additionally, these compositive materials are considered safe for patients with allergies and sensitivities. The resin used for the filling is more durable than the metal amalgam and strengthens what is left of the tooth structure with its secure bond. The material expands and contracts at the same rate as a natural tooth, reducing the likelihood of bacteria growth or the filling falling out.
Required follow-up care
Regardless of which filling procedure is used, it is important to maintain good hygiene practices to avoid further decay of any of the remaining teeth. While the filling may prevent more serious damage to a specific tooth, failing to brush and floss regularly or to schedule routine dental exams can cause damage in other areas of the mouth. The patient's commitment to taking care of the treatment impacts the longevity of results.
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Esthetic dentistry can provide functional and attractive treatments for filling a cavity. Schedule a consultation to learn more about this non-invasive option.
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