3 Signs You May Need Dental Fillings

3 Signs You May Need Dental Fillings from Dragonfly Dental of Port Charlotte in Port Charlotte, FLDental fillings are often used by dentists to treat dental cavities. In some cases, they may also be recommended to repair cracked or worn-down teeth. Dentists look for certain signs to determine if a dental filling is necessary or if the patient would benefit more from other types of restorative care. In this review, we discuss the common signs that indicate a need for dental fillings.

The most common signs that indicate a need for dental fillings

The three common signs that indicate a need for dental fillings are small holes in teeth, tooth discomfort, and tooth discoloration. Here is a closer look at each of these signs.

Small holes in teeth

The term cavity refers to an opening or hole that develops on the surface of a tooth. This occurs when the enamel breaks down due to acid that is released by a combination of bacteria and food particles (i.e., sugar). The most noticeable sign that indicates that a patient needs a dental filling is a hole that can be felt or observed on the outermost layer of a tooth (or multiple teeth). A large hole may indicate a need for more extensive treatment, such as root canal therapy and/or a dental crown. However, dental fillings can repair most small holes in teeth, regardless of the location of the tooth and the cavity.

Tooth pain and sensitivity

Some cavities are easier to detect than others. There are cases where the hole on the tooth is not obvious, like when it is on the backside or chewing surface of a molar. However, there are other signs to look for when determining if a dental filling is necessary. Specifically, many patients report tooth pain and sensitivity, as the outermost layer of teeth — the enamel — has worn away and exposed the underlying layers. These layers contain nerves and blood vessels, hence the sensitivity and pain when exposed to hot and cold substances.

Dark spots on teeth (tooth discoloration)

A dentist may recommend dental fillings if the patient has dark spots on their teeth, also known as tooth discoloration. The specific color depends on the severity of the cavity. If the enamel is only weakened and not eroded, the tooth may be bright white. In this case, a filling may not be necessary, and the goal may instead be to strengthen the enamel. However, if the tooth is starting to turn a dark color, that indicates a cavity and a need for a dental filling (or another form of restorative care).

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Get started with a consultation visit at our dental practice

If you notice tooth pain and sensitivity, dark spots on your teeth, or holes in one or more of your teeth, we strongly encourage you to schedule a visit here at our dental practice. We can assess the status of your teeth and determine if dental fillings are an appropriate treatment solution.

Request an appointment or call Dragonfly Dental of Port Charlotte at 941-676-9225 for an appointment in our Port Charlotte office.

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