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We all know that large cavities need to be filled in order to preserve the life of a tooth. But what about smaller cavities? Do these cavities need to be filled too, or will they heal on their own? In this article, you’ll learn the best way to care for cavities, both large and also small.

Understanding Tooth Decay

In order to understand how fillings work, it’s important to understand the different stages of tooth decay. Decay starts when bacteria in the mouth begins to affect the tooth enamel, weakening its overall surface. This process is called demineralization. After the enamel weakens, a cavity will begin to form. Cavities are small holes caused by tooth decay. Over time, cavities can grow and spread, affecting the inside of the tooth and also surrounding areas.

What is a Dental Filling?

After a cavity forms in the tooth, it needs to be cleaned and filled with another material. This filling seals off the damaged area and also prevents new damage from forming. Fillings are necessary because without them, tooth decay can rapidly spread.

Do Small Cavities Need to Be Filled?

Do small cavities need to be filled? In general, the answer is yes. However, small fillings are very simple procedures and don’t require heavy sedation or recovery time. Larger cavities will require root canals, which are larger fillings that involve removing damaged soft tissue inside the tooth. While root canals have a scary reputation, they are really nothing to worry about. Modern root canals are quick and easy. Most patients can return to their regular activities the same day.

If your tooth decay is still in the demineralization phase, then you might be able to skip the filling. But in these cases, your dentist must carefully monitor your mouth to make sure that the decay does not spread.

Dental Fillings in West Humble, TX

Are you dealing with tooth decay? Get a dentist’s opinion as soon as possible so that you can treat the problem. At Lonestar Dental Center, we make the process easy and convenient. Call us today to learn more, or click the link above to book your appointment online.