If you suspect that you may have a cavity in McAllen, early treatment with a dental filling is the best way to restore your smile. At North Park Dental, we offer composite dental fillings that will match your teeth perfectly, and Dr. Munoz uses the latest techniques and tools for pain-free treatment. Contact us now for an appointment with a McAllen dentist, or learn more below.
Dental fillings are used to treat cavities. In this procedure, the damaged and decayed enamel is cut away from the affected tooth, and is replaced with an inert, durable material. This removes the source of the decay, eliminates pain, and restores the shape, size, and function of the tooth.
In the past, metal fillings made of silver, tin, copper, and mercury were the most common filling material. Today, though, composite fillings are more common. This type of filling uses layers of dental resin to rebuild your tooth. Compared to metal fillings, composite fillings look and feel more natural, making them a better option for most patients.
Deep cavities often result in a toothache. If you feel a lot of pain around one of your teeth, you may have a cavity, and your tooth may be at a high risk of becoming infected.
Another common sign of a cavity is tooth sensitivity. If one of your teeth is sensitive to hot and cold foods and drinks, or feels painful when you chew or bite, you may have a cavity.
In some cases, you may even be able to see visual signs of a cavity. If one of your teeth has dark black or brown stains, or you can see visible holes or pits in the tooth, it may be decayed.
However, cavities don’t always cause pain or discomfort, and they’re not always easily visible. This is one of the reasons that it’s important to get regular preventive care, such as six-month teeth cleanings from a dentist like Dr. Ricardo Munoz. This helps you catch cavities early when they may not be causing any of the above symptoms.
No. The filling process is minimally invasive, and Dr. Munoz will numb your mouth to ensure you don’t feel any pain. In addition, you can be sedated during the process to ensure you have a completely comfortable, pain-free experience.
Fillings usually last somewhere between 10-15 years, though it’s possible for fillings to last 20 years or longer, in some cases. To make sure your filling lasts as long as possible, maintain good oral hygiene habits. Brush twice a day for two minutes and floss once a day, and see Dr. Munoz every six months for a teeth cleaning and oral exam at North Park Dental.
If you don’t get a dental filling, the decay will only worsen and penetrate deeper into the tooth. Whereas it may have started as a cavity in your enamel (the uppermost layer of your tooth), the decay will penetrate through the tooth until it reaches the dental pulp.
This is the tooth’s soft inside layer, which is connected to nerves, connective tissue, and blood vessels. Once it’s reached this point, your dental pulp will become infected or inflamed and needs to be treated with a root canal.
The only alternative at this point is to have an extraction. A dental filling is the least invasive, costly, and time-consuming treatment for tooth decay. It effectively treats decay and prevents it from spreading to other teeth or through the bloodstream.
Once the decay has reached a certain point, even a root canal will not be able to save your tooth. Tooth loss should be taken very seriously and avoided at all costs, as it will cause bone loss and increase your risk of future tooth loss.
When you have a tooth removed, you will need to replace it to prevent facial sagging, changes in your bite, and shifting teeth. However, this can all be prevented by attending regular dental appointments, practicing good oral hygiene, and promptly treating oral health problems such as cavities.
If an old filling fails, you should contact us right away so we can replace it. Leaving your tooth exposed can put you at risk for exposing the tooth’s nerve or bacteria reaching the inside of the tooth.
In this case, you are at an increased risk of a tooth infection which may require a root canal. This is considered a dental emergency and we will treat you promptly. Until you get here, you can rinse your mouth with a saltwater solution to remove any bacteria or food particles and take anti-inflammatory pain medication if you have a toothache.
Yes, dental insurance can help cover the cost of fillings. While the amount that your insurance will cover varies depending on the insurance company and policy, fillings are some of the most commonly covered restorative procedures. Some insurance policies may cover up to 80% of this treatment.
At North Park Dental, we accept Sunlife, Careington, and Cigna. However, if you don't have any insurance, we offer financing options through CareCredit as well as payment plans and compassionate finance.
Schedule Your Appointment Today!
Have you noticed tooth discoloration, sensitivity, or holes in the teeth? These could be signs of a cavity that needs to be filled! Contact us at North Park Dental today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ricardo Munoz for a dental filling.
"I love being able to make a positive impact on my patients’ mood and self image."
– Dr. Muñoz