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When you have a cavity, it’s often treated with a filling. Unless the cavity is so large that it threatens the health of the entire tooth, as well as surrounding teeth, a dentist can usually treat it with a standard filling.

However, as with most everything in the dental world, there are myriad options to choose from when it comes to dental fillings. From the type of material used, how visible the filling will be, and how large the cavity is, there are quite a few things Dr. Greg L. Wolfe has to take into account when deciding how best to treat your cavity.

There are three types of fillings used to repair cavities.

Composite fillings are made from a resin material that can be color matched and placed in a single procedure.

Amalgam fillings are less expensive than gold, yet they are just as durable. Amalgam is often dark in color so it is rarely used to fill a cavity in a spot that is visible in your smile.

Porcelain-ceramic fillings can be shaded to match the color of your natural tooth enamel. This makes them a good choice for filling cavities on a tooth in your smile. Just like gold, porcelain fillings are made in a laboratory and then fitted during a follow up appointment.

The biting surface, on premolars and molars primarily do a lot of grinding and chewing. This calls for a filling made from a durable material, like gold. Gold inlays and onlays need to be custom made in a dental lab before being cemented into your cavity at a brief follow up appointment.

Cavities need to be treated as soon as possible to ensure that they don’t spread and affect the surrounding teeth. A delay can cost you the affected, or even multiple, tooth. If you fear you have a cavity, call us today at 805-654-1174 to schedule an appointment.