Dental Fillings & Sealants:
Repair & Protect Your Smile
Sometimes, your smile needs help staying strong. When it’s been damaged, or it’s at risk of being damaged, additional methods outside of regular oral hygiene and dental exams can help. At Carson Dental Care, general dentist Dr. Aluning, can help repair dental damage and protect against further damage with composite dental fillings and sealants. Keep reading to learn more.
What Are Dental Fillings and Sealants?
Dental fillings are materials used to repair damage to your smile. As opposed to traditional dental fillings made of metals that can cause negative reactions or excessive damage to your enamel, our composite dental fillings are made with nonmetallic alternative materials such as resin mixed with high-quality glass, quartz, and porcelain.
Dental sealants are thin plastic coatings that are painted onto the back teeth (molars). Your molars are the most vulnerable to cavities because of the depth and unique shape of the grooves. These spaces are often hard to clean properly, even with regular oral hygiene. By coating these teeth in sealants, your Carson general dentist can prevent food particles and plaque from building up, helping to prevent tooth decay.
Benefits of Composite Dental Fillings
- Natural Appearance — Composite dental fillings are customized to match your natural smile, an impossible-to-achieve effect when your fillings are gold or silver.
- Insulated — Metallic fillings can interact with other metal dental restorations of differing compositions, generating an electrical charge and causing galvanic shock. Fortunately, the materials used in composite fillings are insulators that won’t generate electricity, and won’t shock your mouth.
- Non-Toxic/Hypoallergenic — Silver fillings often contain a toxic metal called mercury, which can produce toxic vapor when you bite down on them. Additionally, both gold and silver fillings may cause negative reactions in patients who are allergic to these materials. The materials used in composite dental fillings are non-toxic and hypoallergenic, making your restorations safer.
- Temperature Resistant — Composite dental fillings don’t expand and contract when they come into contact with hot and cold. This reduces the stress put on the inside of the tooth, preventing sensitivity and helping to maintain the tooth’s structural integrity.
- Preserves Enamel — Composite dental fillings require far less of your natural enamel to be removed to make room for them, which helps further preserve the structural integrity of the surrounding tooth.
- Hardens Quickly — Your Carson general dentist will harden your composite dental fillings almost instantly with a special hand-held blue light. This means you can start enjoying your new smile almost immediately after you leave the dentist’s chair.
Benefits of Dental Sealants
- Prevent Cavities – Dental sealants prevent food and plaque from building up in the grooves in your teeth and prevent up to 80 percent of cavities in the first two years.
- Quick, Painless Application – Applying dental sealants is a quick and painless procedure that can help protect your teeth for up to nine years after application.
- Saves Money – Dental sealants help prevent the need for more expensive, invasive treatments down the line.
- Invisible – Dental sealants are completely clear, blending into your natural smile.
- Affordable – Dental sealants are often extremely affordable, making them accessible to patients across tax brackets.
Treatment With Composite Dental Fillings
Before you can be approved for treatment with composite dental fillings, you’ll attend an initial consultation with general dentist Dr. Aluning. During your initial consultation, your Carson general dentist will evaluate your oral health with a thorough exam. This will include taking X-rays with the PreXion3D Excelsior CBCT Scanner. She’ll also review your medical history and ask you questions about what you’re hoping for from the treatment.
Once Dr. Aluning has approved you for treatment with composite dental sealants, she’ll prepare your teeth by cleaning them and applying a local anesthetic to numb the affected teeth and tissues. Then, she’ll remove any damaged or decayed tooth material. If Dr. Aluning decides you’ll need a dental crown afterward to help reinforce your tooth, she’ll take digital images and impressions of your teeth using the iTero® Intraoral Scanner. These images and impressions will serve as the blueprints for your crown.
Applying Your Composite Dental Fillings
Once your teeth are ready, Dr. Aluning will apply the resin of your composite dental fillings in layers, hardening each layer as she goes. The blue light will help the fillings harden instantaneously.
Applying Your Dental Crown
If your treatment calls for additional support from a crown, Dr. Aluning will shape the tooth into a base and apply the custom crown the same day as your appointment using the revolutionary fastmill.io™ In-Office Mill.
Treatment With Dental Sealants
Before you can be approved for treatment with dental sealants, you’ll attend your initial consultation. Just like with composite dental fillings, your Carson general dentist will thoroughly examine your mouth, review your oral health and ask you about your smile goals. If you already have cavities, you’ll need to have those treated before you can have sealants.
Once Dr. Aluning has decided that you qualify for dental sealants, she’ll thoroughly clean your teeth to remove any bacteria or food particles.
Applying Your Dental Sealants
To apply your dental sealants, Dr. Aluning will simply paint them onto your back molars and dry them with a curing light. From there, you’ll be free to enjoy a smile that’s better protected from plaque and tooth decay.