Health & Wellness
What Happens During a Filling Appointment?

What Happens During a Filling Appointment?

Cavities are an extremely common ailment for dental patients. If you’ve never had cavities treated before, it might seem overwhelming at first, but it is an extremely common procedure. Learning the process may help ease your anxiety. Here’s what you can expect during your filling appointment.

How Long Will the Appointment Last?

Most filling appointments with park slope family dentistry doctors last about an hour. Often the dentist will schedule your appointment to be longer than estimated to ensure that there is plenty of time. You may need enough time for x-rays, numbing and then for the filling process.

How Do Dentists Remove the Decay?

Cavities are permanent decay that affects the tooth. They develop due to the bacteria in your mouth, along with sugary foods, drinks and a lack of dental hygiene. When the procedure begins, the dentist will numb the teeth and gums before injecting anesthetic to make them completely numb. If you have a lot of dental anxiety, your dentist may use nitrous oxide.

Once numbed, your dentist may place a rubber dam in your mouth to protect your mouth from debris. Next, the doctor will drill out the decay. He or she will use a drill, air abrasion tool or a laser. This is the part that most people have anxiety about. However, you will be completely numb so you will not feel any pain during the procedure. Once he or she removes the decay, the tooth must be cleaned to prevent any further infection.

How Does the Dentist Fill the Tooth?

The last step in the process is to fill the tooth. Dentists have a variety of materials that they can use to fill the tooth, including: 

  • Resin
  • Amalgam
  • Ionomers
  • Gold
  • Ceramic

Dentists have to fill the tooth to ensure that bacteria doesn’t enter the tooth and that the decay doesn’t continue. After the filling material is inserted into the tooth, the dentist will file down the tooth.  Once finished, you can expect to remain numb for a couple of hours. Try not to chew or eat a hot meal until the numbness wears off.

If you’re receiving your first filling, it might be intimidating at first. Keep in mind that your dentist fills teeth all of the time and that you are in good hands. While some patients fear pain, the dentist will do everything he or she can to reduce your ability to feel pain during the procedures. Most patients only feel slight discomfort.

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