What is a tooth?
A tooth is a structure found in the mouth. Humans have 20 primary teeth which, from the age 6 onwards, get replaced by 32 permanent teeth.
Every tooth consists of several layers.
A tooth has 3 hard layers:
- Enamel is found on the outer layer and is the hardest part of the tooth. It‘s the primary line of defence from caries (tooth decay).
- Dentin forms a bulk of tooth. The dentin is covered by the enamel at the crown of the tooth, and by the cementum at the root.
- Cementum resembles bone by its composition.
Inside them is another, soft layer:
- Dental pulp – It is made up of living connective tissue and blood vessels. It also hosts the famous “nerve”.
How and why does tooth decay occur?
The main culprit for tooth decay is a bacteria named Streptococcus mutans. When we eat sugary and sticky food, a harmful film is created on the surface of our teeth, called the PLAQUE. Conjoined with this infamous bacteria, the sugar is digested and an ACID destructing the dental tissue is created.
First it attacks the enamel, and then, if left untreated, it penetrates deeper, to the dentin.
How do we treat tooth decay?
If caries consumes just the enamel, we consider it superficial and easily treatable. Treatment of tooth decay implies making a small hole in the tooth using a dental drill. The decay is now accessible and can be removed.
If the entire caries has been successfully removed at the first appointment, the filling is placed immediately!
If the bacteria penetrated deeper into dentin, the treatment gets more complicated and prolonged. We are then talking about deep caries. It is treated by removing as much caries as possible, preventing its penetration to the “nerve”. The stomatologist then places a medication into the cavity, inducing the tooth to produce new dentin. Until the next appointment, the medication protects the nerve and enables the stomatologist to remove the rest of the caries, without extracting the nerve, and to place a filling.
Tooth decay treatment is not always a simple process. That’s why it’s important that you visit your dentist regularly and not wait until you notice a tooth decay or feel toothache. Regular check-ups, every six months, will prevent major tooth decay which takes a long time to treat.
Types of dental fillings
Filling is made of an artificial material and serves to restore a part of the tooth removed due to caries. There are three main types of filings used in everyday dental practice:
1. Composite (white) resins restore the missing part of the tooth and are almost invisible. They are made in many different shades corresponding to natural tooth shades. From the aesthetic viewpoint, they are highly favourable. When shaped and polished adequately, a composite resin is almost unnoticeable in the mouth. It was considered earlier that white fillings are “weaker” than the black ones. However, stomatology has advanced considerably and nowadays, composite resins are as resilient and robust as the amalgam ones.
You have probably had an opportunity to try out the white filling. You were surely curious what was it that the dentist was putting inside your tooth. Let us explain the process:
- First step involves etching the tooth's surfaces with a weak acid to clean and grind the tooth surface.
- The dentist will now paint or dab "bonding agent" onto the tooth to chemically attach it to the filling.
- After that, the dentist adds successive layers of dental composite. Each layer is set by the curing light to make the filling as strong and resilient as possible. You all probably remember the blue light! The filling is then polished to merge with the tooth and to become indistinguishable.
2. Amalgam (black) fillings are a mixture of metal alloy containing, silver, tin, copper and mercury. For placement of these fillings, the dentist needs to remove a larger portion of dental tissue than is the case with composite resins. Since the filling is connected only mechanically to the tooth, it also has to be larger. Lately, the black fillings have been “accused” of releasing mercury which has a toxic effect on health. This claim is still a subject of controversy.
3. Glass-ionomer fillings – are white and used as permanent fillings in baby teeth. Their advantage is their ability to actively fight tooth decay by releasing fluoride, known to have positive effect on dental health. They are primarily used in children. On the other hand, they are less resilient and hard, which makes them unsuitable filling candidates on permanent teeth, that should last many years.
Which filling is better?
In the past, it was assumed that amalgam fillings are superior in both duration and quality. At that time, white fillings absorbed and cracked easily, and couldn’t compete with the black ones. With the technology advancement, the composite (white) resins have become sufficiently resilient and hard, outperforming amalgam fillings in almost all areas – aesthetic and mechanical.
How do we approach tooth filling at the Pavlovic Clinic?
Our Clinic works exclusively with the most advanced tooth filling materials. As for the composites, we only use those which have proven themselves in the market as having the best features. Our patients are satisfied because they receive fillings that last long and are of the best quality.
Our tooth fillings are guaranteed. The most important thing for us is to prove to our patients that they came to the right place.
Professionals at our team are highly skilled to work with both children and adults. That’s why filling baby teeth is not a nightmare anymore, neither for children or the parents.
Tooth filling price
The price of tooth filling does not refer solely to the price of material used to compensate for the tooth defect. Above all it refers to the effort and knowledge invested by the dentist in removing the decay completely and healing your tooth.
Price of tooth filling depends on the size of tooth surface affected by the decay. At our Clinic, it ranges from RSD 2,000 for smaller fillings to RSD 3,000 in cases when a full tooth restoration is needed.
Please remember that every dental exam at our Clinic is FREE OF CHARGE!
At the exam, our stomatologists will check the condition of your fillings and health of your teeth. They will suggest a therapy plan and give you all the advice that you may need.
It’s time you started thinking about your dental health!
We are here to help you!
Call us and schedule your free appointment!