Dental gillings and restorations are a method of treatment for teeth with decay, large chips and cracks or worn down over time. They are designed to restore areas of teeth that are affected by any of these conditions and make it easier for you to resume eating and chewing.
A direct filling is used when after the decay is removed and cleaned away by our dentist during an appointment and a material is placed immediately. This is usually a tooth colour composite resin material that is placed into the clean cavity and bonded, polished, and shaped to look like a tooth.
For direct fillings, we only require you to visit us for one appointment where the filling is placed and is complete by the end of it.
An indirect filling is when we require you to visit us for two visits where the first visit involves our dentist to prepare the tooth, remove the decay and then take an impression with a putty material to send to the laboratories before placing a temporary filling in place. The impression is sent to the laboratories for dental technicians to then design and create a strong filling that is then placed and bonded to the tooth on the second visit.
These fillings made in laboratories are usually very strong with materials ranging from ceramic to metal fused ceramics and metals.
Depending on the size of the filling needed, the area with decay or broken down, our dentists at My Smile Cosmetic Dentistry will discuss with you to make the decision about indirect fillings. It is usually in cases where the area affected is large but does not need a full crown or that there is not a lot of decay but the area is still too large for a direct filling to succeed. This is when an indirect filling is considered.
Indirect fillings are usually one of the two:
An inlay is then the space between the cusps, or points of the back teeth.
An onlay is when the cusps or points of the teeth are involved and required to be filled as well
At My Smile Cosmetic Dentistry we also provide Direct Inlays and Direct Onlays that can be done in one appointment. This is very dependent on your teeth and condition so feel free to have a good discussion with our dentists here.
A temporary filling’s purpose is in the name – it is designed to only hold the place in the mouth for a short amount of time before a more permanent filling can be placed. They are not meant to last and can easily be dislodged from their spot.
You can expect a temporary filling in procedures such as:
1. The first appointment of root canal therapy
In this we are waiting for the tooth’s nerve to calm before further treatment
2. Dental emergencies with chips, cracks and decay where we are placing it to hold the area before a longer appointment and further treatment can be had
3. In young children where it was hard for a permanent filling to be placed
4. Between the first appointment and second appointment of the Indirect Fillings, Porcelain Veneers and Crowns
When a temporary filling is placed, we recommend that within one month of placement a plan is to be made to decide what to do with the space. In treatment plans involved with Indirect Fillings, Crowns and Dental Veneers if the temporary filling was to dislodge before the second appointment, please come and see us immediately at My Smile Cosmetic Dentistry for another temporary filling to be placed.
In young children, the filling may need to be changed out within the next 6 month appointment or when the child is compliant to the permanent filling appointment.
With your temporary filling we will always advise to be careful when eating with them, not to eat or chew on anything too firm or chewy as that can dislodge it.
Fillings can last for a long time with good oral hygiene care at home. This involves flossing and daily brushing twice a day. Mouth rinse can be used to help freshen up the mouth and limit sugary foods and drinks.
After a filling is placed, some sensitivity to cold air, sweet things and pressure may be present as the tooth gets used to the filling. This can last up to two to four weeks and should not require pain relief medication.
However if the filling feels sharp to the tongue and cheek, affecting how you chew and bite, and still too sensitive after it’s placed, then please come and see us.
Very rarely will there be a chance of an allergic reaction to the dental filling. At My Smile Cosmetic Dentistry, we take great measures to record your medical history for a holistic approach.
In the instance that this does happen, an allergic reaction similar to a skin allergy will occur. This involves itchy sensations in the area and rashes appearing in the mouth adjacent to the filling. If this does occur, the filling will be replaced with another material.
The best way to manage and make sure that all the fillings are still stable is to come and see us at Sydney CBD Dentistry, North Sydney Dentistry, Parramatta Dentistry, Hornsby Dental or North Ryde Dentistry for your regular 6 monthly check ups.
By allowing us to constantly monitor and examine these areas, we can help make sure that when these fillings have worn away or are in need of a replacement, we can prepare and plan accordingly.