As a parent, keeping your child’s teeth happy and healthy is essential to their overall health. Dental fillings are a standard solution to treat tooth decay and restore the natural shapes and function of damaged teeth.
This comprehensive guide will explore the importance of dental fillings, the different types available for your child, how the process works, and ways to prepare for and care for fillings.
Table of contents
Why Dental Fillings Are Necessary
When dental decay occurs, it damages the tooth enamel and creates cavities. If left untreated, these cavities can progress into deeper layers of the tooth, causing pain, infection, and even tooth loss.
Dental fillings are a dental treatment designed to restore the function and integrity of natural teeth damaged by decay. They help prevent the spread of decay and maintain the strength and appearance of your child’s natural teeth.
For more information, read the blog Cavities: What Parents Need To Know.
Different Types of Dental Fillings
The two most common types of dental filling materials are amalgam and composite.
- Amalgam fillings: Sometimes referred to as silver amalgam fillings, these dental restorations are composed of a blend of metals such as silver, tin, copper, and mercury. Silver fillings are more durable and long-lasting than composite resin fillings, making them suitable for larger cavities and back teeth.
- Composite Fillings: Also known as tooth-colored fillings, composite fillings consist of a composite resin material that matches the natural color of your child’s teeth. This type of filling is more visually appealing than amalgam fillings and is ideal for front teeth and other visible areas.
Your pediatric dentist will help you decide which type of filling is best for your child based on the location and severity of the decay.
Prepare Your Child for the Filling Procedure
Preparing your child for their dental visit can reduce anxiety and ensure a smoother experience. Here are some tips for getting ready:
- Talk with your child about the procedure and explain why it is important.
- Schedule the appointment at a time of day when your child is well-rested and not rushed.
- Consider reading a book or watching a video about the procedure so your child knows what to expect.
- Encourage your child to ask questions about the filling procedure.
What to Expect During the Appointment
At Denver Youth Dental, we strive to make the dental filling procedure as comfortable as possible for your child. The process generally includes:
- Tooth preparation: The dentist will first numb the area around the affected tooth to minimize discomfort. They will remove the decayed portion of the tooth and then clean it to eliminate any remaining bacteria.
- Application of filling material: Once the tooth is clean, the dentist will apply the chosen filling material (composite resin or dental amalgam) to the cavity and use a special light to harden the material.
- Shaping and polishing: The dentist will trim any excess material and polish the filling to ensure it fits comfortably with your child’s bite.
Caring for Your Child’s Teeth After Fillings
Good oral hygiene habits will prevent additional decay and help maintain the strength and durability of the fillings. Encourage your child to:
- Brush their teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss daily to remove plaque buildup between teeth.
- Use mouthwash to help remove bacteria.
- Visit the dentist regularly for checkups and professional cleanings.
- Limit sugary foods and drinks to reduce the risk of tooth decay.
Read our blog, 7 Tips for a Healthy Smile, for helpful tips to establish a good oral health routine with your child.
Choose Denver Youth Dental for Your Child’s Dental Needs
At Denver Youth Dental, your childs dental health is our top priority. Whether it’s dental fillings or other preventative measures, our team of experienced professionals is dedicated to providing the highest standard of dental care in a friendly and comfortable environment.
If you are searching for a kid’s dentist in Denver or a pediatric dentist in Aurora,Thornton or Hampden, contact Denver Youth Dental & Vision at (303) 953-8801 or complete the online booking form. Don’t wait until a problem arises – choose Denver Youth as your partner in your child’s oral health care today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Contrary to common belief, dental fillings are not painful. We use local anesthesia to numb the area around the affected tooth. However, your child might experience discomfort or mild sensitivity for a few days after the procedure. In most cases, over-the-counter pain relief medications or a special mouthwash can alleviate these symptoms.
No, children are generally not put to sleep for dental fillings. Local anesthesia is used to numb the area around the tooth and make the procedure comfortable. In some cases, mild sedation may be used for children who are highly anxious or have special needs.
Read Everything You Need To Know About Pediatric Dental Sedation for more information.