Cavities, one of the most commonly occurring dental problems, are formed when bacteria erodes your dental enamel. In the past, dental cavities were filled with a material called amalgam, which is a mixture of different metals, such as silver or mercury. Now we know that amalgam fillings do not bond well with the teeth and that the mercury is dangerous to your health. At Smiles of Chevy Chase, experienced dentist Dr. Despina Markogiannakis offers tooth-colored fillings made from a composite resin to fill and protect cavities. Dr. Markogiannakis can also remove old metal fillings and replace them with tooth-colored fillings for a safer and better-looking treatment of cavities. Contact our Chevy Chase, MD dental office to receive more information about metal filling replacements and tooth-colored fillings.
Tooth-colored fillings often fill in the decay in the enamel after it has been cleaned by Dr. Marko. Composite resin is a versatile material that can be used to treat other problems with your teeth, including cracks or enamel that has been worn down by teeth grinding (bruxism). Since the composite resin is colored to match your natural teeth, tooth-colored fillings can be used on both the front and back teeth for a seamless appearance. If you have metal fillings, talk to Dr. Marko about having them removed and replaced with tooth-colored fillings.
What To Expect
Getting a filling at Smiles of Chevy Chase is typically an easy process. The area surrounding the cavity will be numbed with a local anesthetic to minimize your discomfort. Other forms of sedation can be discussed if you have any fears or dental anxieties to help keep you relaxed during the procedure. Once you are prepared, the decayed enamel is removed with a unique dental drill that Dr. Markogiannakis will select based on where the cavity is located in the tooth and the level of decay. After the enamel is removed and the tooth is cleaned, the space will be filled with the composite material and set with a special light. Dr. Marko will polish the filling so it feels comfortable and matches your natural teeth.
You should be able to resume your normal daily activities after your filling is done, but you might have some sensitivity to hot and cold foods and drinks for a few days. You may take over-the-counter pain relief medication to address any discomfort, but you should not have any major issues. If after a few days the filling feels too high or uneven, please contact our office. Your tooth-colored filling can be kept clean by following a normal home oral care routine with daily brushing and flossing. During your annual dental exam, Dr. Marko will assess your filling and decide if it needs to be repaired or replaced at any point.
Tooth-colored fillings are a common treatment for cavities that are usually covered, at least in part, by dental insurance. A member of our team will contact your insurance company to determine your exact coverage before calculating your personal costs. If you do not have insurance, Dr. Marko can go over the payments accepted by our office during your consultation, as well as medical financing options.
Dental cavities may start as a common issue, but it's important to have them treated before they can become a bigger problem. At Smiles of Chevy Chase, small areas of tooth decay can be treated with tooth-colored fillings. Dr. Markogiannakis matches the color of your natural teeth so you can get a seamless, healthy smile. If you suspect that you or your child could have cavities, contact our Chevy Chase, MD dental office to schedule a dental exam with leading dentist Dr. Markogiannakis.