Tooth-Colored Fillings, Inlays, Onlays in Hershey PA

Cavities are a common oral health issue that affects most of us even when we take great care of our teeth and gums. 

Through advanced dental technology and equipment, we have come a long way in preventing and treating cavities. While we are still working on eliminating cavities entirely, we have been able to reduce the numbers and work with patients to prevent tooth decay.

Almost every American will have a cavity at some point in their lives, but we can lower this possibility through preventive dentistry. Regular dental cleanings and exams allow us to remove plaque and tartar build-up that lead to cavities, and Dr. Davis can spot any developing cavities so we can treat them quickly. Our methods of filling cavities have also evolved, we have found that tooth-colored filling blends in with your natural tooth shade and is very popular with Hershey patients.

Although silver fillings are still used by some dentists, at our practice, we prefer and predominantly use tooth-colored composite material to fill cavities. Composite fillings, inlays, and onlays placed at Wesley R. Davis, DDS, look naturally beautiful but also protect and strengthen teeth weakened by decay. These restorations are esthetically pleasing and, thanks to updated bonding techniques, very strong.

Tooth-colored composite material is durable and has been proven to stand up well to years of use. However, unlike traditional silver fillings, they match the appearance of natural teeth quite closely. In general, we do not advocate the removal of silver fillings. But if you have an old, dark filling that’s marring the beauty of your smile, we’ll be happy to talk to you about the cosmetic advantages of replacing them with natural-looking composite fillings.

Why We Get Cavities

Our mouths are perfect hosts for bacteria; even a clean mouth is home to thousands of different species of bacteria. Not all bacteria are harmful; many bacteria can help protect our mouth from harmful microbes.

Our mouths typically maintain an average temperature of 95 degrees, and a regular diet of sugar and simple carbohydrates can provide bacteria the food they need to grow and multiply. When you eat sugary foods or drink sodas, the sugar remains in your mouth and starts mixing with food particles and bacteria to create plaque, a sticky film that sticks to your teeth. Once there, the bacteria metabolize the sugar and produce acid, which can eat away at your enamel.

When enough enamel has eroded to form a hole, this is what we refer to as a cavity. Left untreated, tooth decay will continue to spread and infect other teeth. The tooth will start to weaken and crack, which can lead to tooth loss. Regular brushing and flossing can get rid of a lot of the plaque that builds up on or between your teeth. Still, even diligent at-home care will not remove all the plaque; only a dental professional has the dental tools and techniques to extinguish plaque fully.

Why We Choose Tooth-Colored Fillings

When teeth are properly cared for, they are strong, resilient, and highly functional. The best material for a dental filling should mimic this strength and durability when subjected to biting forces. The restoration should also be durable, relatively easy to place, and cost-effective.

Tooth-colored restorations fulfill many of these criteria. They’re bonded directly to the surface of the tooth, creating a secure fit with the natural tooth. The bonding process eliminates the need to remove a lot of tooth structure to accommodate the restoration. This conservative approach leaves more of your own natural tooth structure in place, so it remains stable and intact. Additionally, the resin used for our restorations wears like natural dental enamel, which protects opposing teeth when you bite down.

Besides being virtually invisible, tooth-colored fillings in Hershey offer many advantages for patients, including.

  • White fillings preserve your natural tooth since Dr. Davis does not need to remove as much tooth structure to fill the cavity
  • Tooth-colored fillings are durable and can strengthen the tooth
  • Composite material can be used in cosmetic dentistry to fix minor small flaws like chipped teeth
  • A Tooth-colored filling does not react to temperature the way metal fillings do

If you have metal fillings and are interested in replacing them with tooth-colored material, let Dr. Davis and his dental team know. We can arrange an evaluation to learn more about the procedure involved in replacing metal fillings.

Fillings, Onlays, and Inlays in the 17033 Area

When you have minor amounts of tooth decay or a cavity of some kind, the best treatment option is the use of tooth-colored fillings. Using dental fillings, Dr. Davis will be able to restore the strength of the damaged tooth so that it is structurally sound. In the case of more advanced tooth decay, the use of a filling is probably not going to be sufficient to create an effective restoration.

In these cases, dental inlays and onlays are preferable. Inlays and onlays are also cemented to the weakened portion of the tooth. An inlay is placed inside the tips of the tooth. Onlays are similar to an inlay but are a more substantial restoration that extends over one or more of the cusps of the tooth.

How to Avoid Tooth Cavities

While we may not be able to avoid every single cavity in our lifetime, we can put in work and effort to reduce those chances significantly.

  • Meticulous at-home oral health care including brushing and flossing 
  • Routine dental cleanings and exams with your Hershey dentist
  • Avoid sugary drinks and foods
  • Consumption of fruits and vegetables can help neutralize cavity-causing conditions
  • Let Dr. Davis know if you grind your teeth at night (bruxism)—a condition that can wear down your enamel

Call Wesley R. Davis, DDS today at (717) 533-4202 if you suspect you might have bruxism. Dr. Davis can examine your teeth for warning signs; we may recommend a mouth guard to protect your smile while you sleep. 

Dental Bonding as a Cosmetic Procedure

Do you absolutely love your smile? Are there minor cosmetic flaws that you wish you could improve?

Stubborn yellow stains, chipped teeth, gaps between teeth, and size or shape abnormalities are all cosmetic problems that dental bonding can change. Dr. Davis can add tooth-colored resin to your tooth and fix any of these concerns. Dental bonding is cost-effective and non-invasive, which makes it a popular cosmetic dentistry procedure. For many Hershey patients, dental bonding can be completed in just one dental visit.

If dental bonding in Hershey sounds like a good option for you, contact Wesley R. Davis, DDS today at (717) 533-4202, to schedule an appointment with Dr. Davis to learn more.

Please Call for an Appointment

If you think you may have a cavity that needs attention or if you’re overdue for a cleaning and exam, please call our Hershey dental office. With over 30 years of experience in serving patients in the Hershey area, you can be confident that Dr. Davis has the expertise to help you reach your goal of a healthy, more attractive smile.