Even with the most diligent oral hygiene and mindful eating and drinking, cavities can happen. Once a cavity has formed in your tooth, a small hole has been created in the enamel, the hard outer layer of the tooth. The decay will grow and the hole will get larger over time. If left untreated, the decay will begin to reach the inner layers of the tooth. If decay gets deep within the tooth, a root canal treatment may be needed. A dental extraction may even need to be the last resort. A dental filling treats a cavity and stops the decay in its tracks.
The progression of decay
As the decay gets past the enamel, it will first reach the middle inner layer of the tooth, the dentin. The dentin has millions of tiny tubes leading directly to the pulp. The pulp is the inner most part of the tooth where the nerves, soft tissue, and blood vessels live. Once decay has reached the pulp, severe pain and infection can happen. Infection in the pulp can get inside the bloodstream and spread to other parts of your body.
How does a filling stop decay?
Living up to its name, a filling literally fills in the cavity. First, your dentist will clean out the area and disinfect the hole. Any decay or damaged parts of the tooth will be removed. A composite resin will be used to fill and cover the hole. The resin can be color-matched to your tooth creating a natural look. More than just appearance, the resin functions similarly to the surface of your tooth. The filling will stop the cavity and restore chewing function to your tooth.
Fillings prevent cavities from getting worse
If you think you may have a cavity, a filling can help. Schedule a consultation with Grinnell Street Dental in Sheridan, WY, by calling (307) 672-7567. We welcome residents from Sheridan, WY, as well as Gillette, Billings, Miles City, and all surrounding communities.