Dental fillings provide a quick and convenient way to repair damaged or decaying teeth. At Smile By the Station Dentistry in Seattle, Washington, cosmetic and family dentist Ok Kyu Lee, DDS, and the team use tooth-colored fillings to repair and restore permanent teeth. Call Smile By the Station Dentistry today to schedule a dental filling consultation, or book your appointment online.
Dental fillings and dental crowns both repair damaged and decaying teeth, but they aren’t the same thing:
Fillings are dental restorations made of porcelain, composite resin, or metal amalgam. They repair minor enamel damage caused by decay or general wear-and-tear.
Fillings are applied to a tooth’s chewing surface. Once the filling material dries, it restores your tooth to its near-original shape and size.
Dental crowns are synthetic caps made of porcelain or ceramic. They repair damaged or decaying molars (the teeth at the back of your mouth). Your Smile By the Station Dentistry provider might recommend a crown if you have a large cavity or a severely damaged tooth.
Getting a dental filling takes 30-60 minutes on average.
First, your Smile By the Station Dentistry provider numbs your mouth with a local anesthetic. Then, they use a drill or a handheld laser to remove the decaying area of tooth enamel.
After removing the damaged tooth enamel, your provider cleans your tooth of bacteria and debris. Then, they “fill” the hole in your tooth with a tooth-colored composite resin. They apply the filling one layer at a time, letting the material dry (or “cure”) before adding more.
Once the filling is complete, your provider polishes your tooth and removes any excess material. Last, they rinse your mouth out and provide care instructions.
Dental fillings don’t require special care. To keep your fillings in top shape, brush your teeth twice daily, floss regularly, and visit Smile By the Station Dentistry every six months for dental cleanings.
Fillings typically last 5-7 years*, but they can last longer. Contact the Smile By the Station Dentistry team if your tooth is extremely sensitive or you notice a crack in your filling. Without treatment, harmful bacteria can infiltrate your tooth and cause an infection.
Most dental insurance plans cover fillings, but every policy is different. Call your insurance provider before making an appointment at Smile By the Station Dentistry if you have questions about coverage.
Call Smile By the Station Dentistry today to see if you can benefit from a dental filling, or book your appointment online.
*Individual results may vary.