Composite Fillings in Buffalo, NY
Experienced Buffalo Dentists Providing Affordable Composite Fillings and Dental Restorations
Composite fillings are recommended when a tooth has become weakened due to gradual wear and tear, an infection, or an injury.
Dental composite is an artificial polymer, much like Styrofoam and some forms of rubber, that is used in fillings to mimic the color and durability of natural teeth. Because its basic form is a resin, a gelatinous fluid similar to amber and shellac, dental composite can be molded to complement or complete the shape of any tooth that requires restoration. Fillings may be necessary when a tooth is cracked or chipped due to trauma or general use in order to both repair the tooth to its original form and hinder bacteria from infecting the exposed inner tissues under the enamel.
Composite fillings are recommended when a tooth has become weakened due to gradual wear and tear, an infection, or an injury. The aging process results in a slow, steady weakening of the enamel, the white translucent substance on the surface of the teeth, and as enamel thins and dwindles in strength, it is easier for the bacteria in plaque to infiltrate a tooth, attacking and infecting the dentin and pulp within. Similarly, a lack of consistent dental care can result in the buildup of calculus (tartar) and acid-producing bacteria, the presence of which besieges the enamel and impairs its ability to regenerate. Even the healthiest and best-maintained teeth are no match for trauma, which can fracture the enamel and dentin (the middle layer) and grant bacteria direct access to the dental pulp and root of the tooth. In each of these cases, a filling is one of a small handful of options that can prevent the worsening of dental conditions and allow individuals to retain their damaged teeth.
Dental composite is a mixture of polymer resin and a thickening material such as silicon dioxide (the same molecule found in glass and quartz) or ceramic. Due to its versatility, the composite can be sculpted into the form most appropriate for filling a crack or hole in a tooth, and because it varies in color, a dentist can choose a hue most similar to that of a patient’s teeth so that the fillings blend in seamlessly after application. Dental composite easily defends teeth from further deterioration as well as everyday threats such as extreme temperatures and the regrowth of plaque. These types of fillings also have a substantial shelf life, lasting as long as a decade before maintenance or replacement may be required. Among the disadvantages of fillings made from composite resin are their unchanging color and sensitivity to moisture. Though stain resistance may seem to be an asset, because dental fillings do not cover an entire tooth, if an individual’s teeth are discolored due to dietary choices, the fillings will cling to their original color and begin to become noticeable. The installation of a filling is a simple process, but it is crucial that a tooth be completely dry before composite resin is applied, or the resin will not set and adhere properly to the tooth. Despite these drawbacks, composite resin fillings are an effective way to rehabilitate injured and degrading teeth, staving off further complications that could result in losing a tooth.