How do dentists fix and fill cavities?

Cavities are troublesome holes which form in the tooth because of our eating and drinking habits. Most people dread hearing the word ‘cavity’, and for good reason. Between the loud drilling noises, the bright lights, and scary needles, visiting the dentist for a cavity is hardly an enjoyable experience. Luckily, fixing a cavity is not as complicated as it sounds. This is how your dentist at Adelaide Dental will fix it for you.


What are the symptoms of a cavity?

As mentioned earlier, a cavity is a hole that forms in a tooth due to acid and bacteria eating away at the tooth, causing an infection. If left untreated a cavity can lead to tooth loss, so it’s best to get it treated as quickly as possible.

Symptoms of a possible cavity can include:

  • Sharp pain in the tooth
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Grey, brown or black marks or discolouration patches
  • Bad breath


How do dentists fix and fill cavities?

If your dentist has told you that you have a cavity, you don’t need to worry, it can easily be fixed. Imagine a crack in a wall that needs to be filled with plaster. This is exactly how your dentist will fill your cavity- but instead of plaster your dentist will plug the hole with a ‘filling’.

First, the area will be numbed with a local anesthetic so that the procedure will be relatively painless. Next, the decay will be removed from the hole and surrounding area with a drill. This is to ensure that the repair is not compromised by any residual bacteria. Once the tooth is clean the surface will be ‘etched’ with an acid primer to roughen the surface layer of the tooth so that the filling will bond.

Next is to apply the filling.


What is a filling?

A filling is a clever method of restoring a tooth which has been affected by decay. It is the application of natural-looking material to fill the hole in your tooth and seal it so that no other bacteria can get in to cause havoc. The goal is to limit the space through which bacteria can enter –preventing decay and the frequency of future your dentist visits.


Types of fillings

A filling will vary in terms of color and size. Our friendly team will go through all the options

with you, examining the extent of repair that is needed, and even allergies that you might

have to certain materials. As a rule of thumb, you can choose between the following types of materials for your filling:


Gold filling

Considered the most expensive choice (duh, it’s gold!), this type of filling is well tolerated by teeth and gums and can sometimes last up to 20 years.


Silver fillings

This type of filling is relatively inexpensive and durable.


Composite resins

Many patients choose this option since it can be matched to be the same color as your teeth –providing a beautiful and natural appearance.


Porcelain fillings

Porcelain fillings can also be matched to the color of your teeth and are also stain-resistant.


A cavity is nothing to be afraid of and be easily fixed in a matter of hours. Just remember the longer you leave it, the worse it becomes, so it’s always better to fix the problem as soon as it arises.

Our team here at Adelaide Dental will consult with you to determine the best type of material to fix your filling so you can rest assured that you will leave our clinic with a beautifully restored smile without the niggle pain. If you’re looking for a dentist in Adelaide then pop into our Rundle Mall clinic to make an appointment today.