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7905 East 106th Street Tulsa, OK 74133

Dental Fillings Tulsa, OK

Tooth decay is one of leading cause of missing teeth in patients. A prevalent oral disease, most adults will experience some degree of tooth decay in their lives. Tooth decay is a progressive disease and can create more complex dental concerns when left untreated. Early detection allows for conservative dental treatments such as dental fillings. Dr. Frank Henrich is an expert dentist that provides dental fillings in Tulsa, OK to patients of all ages.

dental fillings in Tulsa, OK

What Causes Tooth Decay?

Bacteria builds and produces an acidic by-product, this acid is what causes the enamel to erode. Once the structure of the tooth has been compromised, the tooth becomes susceptible to infection and further damage. Biannual dental check-ups allow Dr. Henrich to detect decay in the earliest stages of development preventing further damage to the tooth, gums or bone.

What is a Dental Filling?

A dental filling is a restorative procedure dentists use to repair minor to moderate tooth decay, damage, or fractures. It involves using a specific material to “fill in” the portion of the tooth that has decayed or broken off.

Dental fillings can also be used to treat minor cosmetic dental concerns. For examples, fillings are typically used to address these dental concerns:

  • Chipped Teeth
  • Cracked Teeth
  • Gaps Between Teeth
  • Tooth Damage
  • Tooth Decay

Materials used for tooth fillings include amalgam, composite resin, gold, or porcelain. We typically use composite resin to restore smiles. Also called white or tooth colored fillings, composite resin dental fillings are color-matched to blend in with the patient’s existing teeth. They provide patients with a more natural, durable, and long-lasting solution to fixing and restoring teeth.

Why are Dental Fillings Necessary?

Using a dental filling to treat a cosmetic or general concern can help prevent it from developing into a more advanced problem later on. If you want to keep your teeth and gums in good shape for the whole of your life, it’s going to require some dedicated dental care. However, more and more research is starting to show how the health of your mouth can actually impact your overall health, so you have even more reasons to keep up your daily dental routines.

Your oral health can provide some insight into the rest of your body. In fact, one study found that people with gum disease were 40% more likely to have a chronic condition on top of it.

There are over 500 species of bacteria setting up shop in your mouth right now. Together, they can form plaque, which can build up on your teeth and gum lines and cause gingivitis and periodontitis. If these bacteria get into your bloodstream, they can cause infections and inflammations in other parts of the body.

If these infections occur, it could lead to:

  • Endocarditis
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Premature births
  • Diabetes

As it turns out, the condition of your mouth could also indicate that you already have some other problems. For example, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and osteoporosis could have an impact on the health of your mouth.

Brush and floss daily, eat healthy foods, and get regular checkups to keep your teeth and gums in good shape. In return, you may have a positive impact on your overall wellbeing.

About the Dental Filling Procedure

Dental fillings are the standard for repairing damage caused by tooth decay. A routine dental procedure, dental fillings can typically be completed in just one visit to our Tulsa, OK dentist office. Patients are generally surprised at how comfortable they feel during their dental treatment.

Dr. Henrich will typically use a local anesthetic for patients optimal comfort. Sedation dentistry options are also available for patients who experience more complex dental anxiety. Sedation options will be discussed prior to treatment and chosen based on the medical history and health of the patient.

The procedure will begin with Dr. Henrich carefully removing all diseased tissue from the tooth. Once removed, the tooth will be thoroughly cleaned and prepared for the filling. The dental filling will help to stabilize the structure of the tooth and prevent further damage.

Dental Fillings FAQs

If you’re looking for more information dental fillings, this frequently asked question section may help you. We have compiled the most common questions about the types of fillings, the procedure, and more for you to reference. If you are unable to find the answer to your question, please contact our dental office for further help.

Will my dental insurance cover a filling?

Most insurance plans will cover a portion of the treatment. We have seen that some plans will only cover the least expensive filling material. Ultimately, it is up to your provider to determine what is and is not covered as well as how much. Your friendly Tulsa dentist office is here to help you navigate your dental insurance and answer your questions!

Will my tooth hurt after a filling?

While it may not be extremely painful, you may experience some sensitivity or discomfort after the filling. This is completely normal and should subside in a few days and up to a week. You may take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug if you need to and also avoid food or drinks that are too hot or cold to avoid exacerbating the sensitivity.

How long will my filling last?

Dental fillings are not meant to last forever. They typically last five to ten years and then will need replaced. Some types of materials will last longer and they are cared for properly. At every regular dental check-up, Dr. Henrich will check on the filling and will let you know when it is ready to be replaced.

Will a dental filling prevent further damage?

Fillings repair the damage and spread caused by tooth decay but do not prevent future cavities. Good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing your teeth two times a day, flossing once a day, and regular dental check-ups, are essential to prevent new decay around fillings and other areas of the teeth​. Additionally, eating a healthy diet and avoiding sugary snacks can help reduce the risk of further decay.

How do I know if I need a dental filling?

You may need a dental filling if you experience symptoms such as toothache, sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet foods, visible holes or dark spots on your teeth, pain when biting or chewing, or a chipped or broken tooth. However, you may not show any signs at all. Regular dental check-ups are vital because your dentist can detect cavities and other issues early, even before symptoms appear. If you notice any of these signs, contact our dental office as soon as possible to prevent further damage and to maintain your oral health.

What types of dental fillings are available?

There several types of fillings we can use to fix your teeth. Silver fillings, or amalgam fillings, are durable and long last, however, they are silver and can be seen when smiling. Composite resin fillings are the common type of filling we use. They provide a durable and long lasting solution and are tooth-colored, so they blend in with natural teeth. We can also provide you with a gold filling or a ceramic filling. Gold dental fillings are highly durable and long-lasting. Ceramic fillings are tooth-colored and aesthetically pleasing.

If you need a dental filling, Dr. Henrich will work with you to determine the best type of filling for your smile. If you would like to explore your options, call (918) 262-4731 or request an appointment online.