closeup of dentist mirror in mouth

Have you noticed mild to moderate pain when eating or drinking something cold, hot, or sugary? You may be dealing with a cavity. At Desert Family Dental, Dr. Lee uses white fillings to treat small to medium cavities and prevent further tooth decay from happening. White fillings consist of tooth-colored composite resin to restore your dental function and nicely complement the natural look of your smile.

In the past, the only way to treat tooth decay was by using fillings made of gold or amalgam, a blend of materials including mercury, silver, copper, tin or zinc. However, both of these types of fillings are very noticeable. White fillings provide our patients with a strong and durable solution to treat cavities to match the natural look of the tooth.

To learn more about white fillings, and how they can benefit you, call our Mesa, AZ, dental office at (480) 838-4185 and schedule your consultation with Dr. Lee.

What is a Cavity?

A cavity (tooth decay) is a small hole in the enamel of the tooth that exposes your dentin layer, often referred to as enamel erosion. Enamel erosion is caused when the buildup of plaque on the outside of the tooth begins to eat away at the enamel. Plaque buildup forms when food, saliva, and bacteria combine to create an acid that eats away at the tooth. When plaque is not dealt with in a timely manner, it begins to break down the enamel of the tooth, causing cavities, gingivitis, gum disease, and even tooth loss.

Although most commonly seen in young children or teens, cavities can occur in adults as well. Cavities are typically the result of a combination of untreated bacteria in the mouth and a diet high in sugary and starchy foods. However, genetics, medications, and a weakened immune system can lead to tooth decay as well.

To prevent cavities from occurring, it’s very important to practice good oral hygiene and see Dr. Lee for a checkup every six months to have your teeth professionally cleaned and x-rays performed.

Symptoms of a Cavity

If you think you may be experiencing a cavity, some of the common symptoms to be aware of include:

  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Mild to severe toothache
  • Pain when eating sugary foods
  • Pain when eating or drinking something hot or cold
  • Pain when chewing or biting down
  • Teeth with noticeable holes or pits

What to Expect During Your Exam

Once Dr. Lee has diagnosed you with a cavity, he will numb the area around the tooth and gum line with a local anesthesia in order to make you comfortable and minimize any pain. Then your cavity will be treated in just a few short steps:

  • STEP 1: Dr. Lee will remove the unhealthy tissue from inside and around the tooth.
  • STEP 2: He will thoroughly clean the area and fill the cavity with tooth-colored composite resin.
  • STEP 3: After the cavity has been filled, a curing light will harden the resin to restore and strengthen the tooth.
  • STEP 4: Any extra composite will be trimmed away and Dr. Lee will check your bite for a comfortable fit.
  • STEP 5: Dr. Lee will polish your tooth for a brighter and healthier smile.

Benefits of White Fillings

Most patients return to regular activity after having their cavity treated with minimal to no pain. In order to prevent further decay from developing, it’s vital that you brush your teeth twice a day, floss daily, and see Dr. Lee for regular checkups. After having your teeth cleaned and cavity repaired, you will immediately notice a brighter smile and a filling that is virtually invisible with long-lasting results.

Call Us Today

To have your cavity treated with a white filling, schedule your consultation today with Dr. Lee by calling our Mesa, AZ, dental office at (480) 838-4185.