For most people, avoiding tooth decay is the No. 1 reason they go to a dentist. Unfortunately, even with the best brushing habits and dental hygiene, cavities may be inevitable. When the time comes for treating dental cavities, Alpine Dental Health has many options to keep your smile at its healthiest.
The good news is that if you receive regular checkups, we’re likely to catch the first signs of tooth decay and treat it with a minimally invasive option. (That’s just one more reason to make sure you stay up with your appointments!) Early-stage cavities, known as white spot lesions, can often be treated only by treating the weakened enamel by hardening it with a calcium or fluoride treatment. If we catch a cavity fast enough, we’re able to repair your tooth without any drilling!
Unfortunately, a lot of cavities aren’t caught in time to be treated so easily. When a tooth has decayed beyond a small lesion, we need to protect the undamaged part of the tooth. We start by removing the decay so it won’t spread to additional enamel, then returning the tooth to its normal shape and function with a filling.
Because we want Alpine Dental Health patients to receive the best care, we treat larger cavities with composite fillings rather than traditional amalgam fillings. These resin-based fillings are colored to match your enamel’s unique color, so they’re rarely noticeable! Because they’re natural colored, it’s easier to detect when they reach the end of their lifespan (about ten years), so we can replace them before failure leads to additional decay.
Most people need at least one filling during their lifetime, and factors such as diet, genetics and, of course, brushing habits, can impact how quickly your teeth decay. The best way to preserve your teeth is to practice good oral hygiene and visit Alpine Dental Health regularly so we can spot and start treating dental cavities while they’re still small and easily managed.