Got Cavities? Here's What To Consider Before Having Your Teeth Filled

Posted on: 13 February 2018

Now that you know there are cavities lurking in your mouth, it's time to take action and get the affected teeth filled before too much decay can take place. Here are a couple of important things to consider before having your cavities treated:

Metals or Not?

One of the first things to think about is whether or not you want your fillings to contain any types of metal. For instance, one of the oldest and most popular options on the market is amalgam fillings, which are made of a mixture of different metals. They're affordable and durable, but about half of the metal used to form the fillings is mercury, which you may not feel comfortable with having in your mouth for a long period of time.

On the other hand, composite fillings are made of acrylic resin which can be shaded to match the color of your natural teeth—but they aren't as durable as amalgam fillings, so you may find that your teeth need to be refilled more often if you choose composites. If you're interested in metal fillings for their durability but don't want to expose yourself to mercury, you can opt for gold fillings. But, keep in mind that gold fillings are one of the most expensive options your dentist can offer you.

During your consultation, ask your dentist for a complete list of filling options and get their expert opinion about the pros and cons of each option before you make a final decision about what to put in your mouth.

Direct or Indirect?

To help narrow your choices down, consider whether you prefer your dentist to provide you with direct or indirect fillings. The direct technique requires local anesthesia before your dentist applies your fillings directly into your teeth. The indirect technique requires your dentist to make molds of your teeth so custom fillings can be made for implantation into the teeth. You can expect to spend a lot more time with your dentist when working with indirect fillings.

But, not all materials can be used for direct and indirect fillings. For example, the direct method is best suited for amalgam fillings, while porcelain fillings can only be applied through the indirect method. Depending on the type of fillings you want to use, your dentist will help you determine whether the direct or indirect method is the best option for you.

Contact a dentist at a dental office like New Image Dental to discuss the issues outlined here and more.