When it comes to dental problems, one of the most common that dentists see and patients experience are dental caries. What’s that? You’ve never heard of dental caries? Well, if we were to write “cavities” you’d know what we were talking about. Yes, cavities are quite common, and so are other forms of tooth decay. That’s why you’ve heard us and other stress over the years that you should brush your teeth at least twice a day (or after every meal if you can), floss every night, and go to you regular check-up with your dentist twice a year. Taking all these steps will help you prevent tooth decay and get it treated as soon as possible.
When you come to our Seattle cosmetic dentistry practice, we will ensure that you have a positive experience when you visit. Using his more than 25 years of experience, Dr. Mark Caggiano will help enhance the beauty of your smile while maintaining your overall dental health. It’s Dr. Caggiano’s long dedication to patient wellness that has made him one of the more popular dentists in the area.
We’d like to take a moment right now to discuss the basics of tooth decay and dental fillings so you can understand why cavities form and why it’s important that they get treated as soon as possible.
A cavity occurs when the bacteria in the mouth erodes the enamel and/or dentin surfaces of the tooth. This bacteria feeds on food particles on a tooth, producing an acid that damages the tooth’s surface. To give you an idea of just how corrosive this acid is, just consider that enamel is the hardest substance in the human body. If dental caries don’t get treated soon enough, the tooth decay can spread and damage more tooth structure. This can lead to weakened teeth, tooth pain, and even tooth loss.
A dental filling is used to replace the decayed structure of a tooth. When you get a filling, Dr. Caggiano will first prepare the tooth by removing the decayed or damaged tooth structure. Using his experience and the latest diagnostic techniques, Dr. Caggiano will work hard to leave as much healthy tooth structure intact. Once the filling is in place, your tooth’s overall structure and strength will be restored.
Now, for more severe tooth decay, a filling may not be the best bet. Indeed, major tooth decay calls for more substantial dental restorations. That’s where inlays and onlays come in. It helps to think of inlays and onlays as larger forms of dental fillings which can restore large portions of decayed tooth structure and even the flat biting surfaces of your molars. If your issues with tooth decay are too serious for even inlays and onlays, then you may need to get dental crowns. These are strong caps that fit right over a tooth, protecting it from further decay while restoring your bite strength and health of your mouth.
To learn more about tooth decay as well as Seattle teeth whitening and other options for effective dental care, contact our Seattle general and cosmetic dentistry practice today.