You get up every morning and often, the first thing you do is grab your toothbrush, squeeze a bit of toothpaste, and brush. Brushing has become a necessary everyday routine. We do not go out of the house without giving our teeth a clean.
It no longer comes as a surprise that the worldwide oral care market size was worth 27.02 billion US dollars in 2016 and is expected to reach a projected value of 39.47 billion US dollars in 2020.
Still, despite the rising consciousness about oral hygiene, tooth decay remains prevalent, affecting 18.6 percent five to 19-year-old children and 31.6 percent of 20 to 44-year-old adults.
Characterized by the breakdown of the tooth’s outer and protective layer called enamel, tooth decay or dental cavity developed through the production of acids by bacteria in the mouth. These bacteria feed on the foods lingering inside the mouth and produce acids which in turn attack the enamel.
The protective layer then weakens and lose its minerals. When the attack on the enamel persist, it loses its ability to repair itself, resulting in a continuous tooth decay process and the ultimate destruction of the enamel.
There are ways on how to prevent tooth decay from proliferating such as practicing proper and regular oral hygiene, using fluoride for added protection, eating healthy and tooth-friendly foods, using dental sealants, avoiding sharing personal hygiene items, and visiting the Lihue dentist at least twice a year for check-up and cleaning.
What if my tooth decay is no longer preventable?
When dental cavity has damaged the tooth and its case become irreversible, it can pose health problems as the teeth function as a support of the jaw and gum tissue, as well as, a chewing musculature.
A cavity-infected tooth can also affect the smile aesthetics and result to self-consciousness and lower self-esteem.
To prevent further damage and to repair the tooth before it becomes unrestorable, a dental filling is needed to retain its normal function and shape.
What is a dental filling?
A dental filling is a type of restorative material utilized in the repair of a decayed, cracked, or broken tooth.
Various materials like gold, amalgam, composite resins, and porcelain are used as dental fillings and dependent on the degree of repair needed, your body’s reception on the material, the area of the tooth in need of filling, and your financial capability to pay for the material.
Gold fillings are the best material as gum tissues tolerate the material well and can last for more than 20 years. However, these fillings are also the most expensive.
On the one hand, amalgam fillings are resistant to wear and can withstand biting forces. The downsides of these fillings are its conspicuous nature and safety concerns about the use of mercury.
Composite resins are commonly used for their tooth-colored appearance which is a mixture of plastic and glass. However, they do not last long, are prone to wear and stains, and not ideal for large decay.
Alternatively, porcelain or ceramic fillings are more stain-resistant that composite resins and can last more 15 years. But, these fillings are also costly.