How Replacement of Decoloured Fillings Helps Have Dental Hygiene

A dental cavity is repaired using filling material that is closest in shade to the patient’s tooth but as with normal teeth, sometimes, the filling material erodes unevenly and accumulates stains more easily than the rest of the tooth enamel. This is when the filling area appears discoloured and shows up as unsightly marks on the teeth.

To explain in greater detail: the composite filling materials are made partly of plastic resin and this resin can become porous on the surface picking up stains or appearing more yellow. The good news is that it is just the surface layer of the filling which is affected by the discolouration and if a few microns of it are removed then the area appears normal and uniform in colour. Opting for replacement of just the surface layers of the filling gives the tooth a new lease of life which is advisable over repeated re-fillings which result in dental decay and eventually a root canal has to be performed on the tooth.

Dentists always recommend that those patients who have had their teeth filled should replace discoloured fillings to have good oral hygiene in order to keep the discolouration of their fillings at bay. A solid regimen of brushing and flossing with occasional dentist check-ups is all it takes.

Usually the first couple of weeks are very important after dental fillings are done and it is best to avoid any food or drinks that might discolour or stain the teeth. It is advised to use a straw for beverages like coffee and tea that cause staining. Also foods such as cranberries, pomegranates, blueberries etc. will stain as well.

A stained restoration may or may not reveal underlying tooth decay. If the tooth is healthy and just the filling is discoloured, sometimes the dentist may just polish or buff the tooth with polishing discs to revitalise it. Another reason to replace tooth fillings is if the client has undergone a whitening procedure. This leaves the teeth looking whiter than the filled in portions, which then have to be polished or scraped and refilled to match the rest of the set’s colour.

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White fillings can become stained particularly around the edges and this is generally treated by smoothing down the edges. In some cases replacement is needed to get the desired result. White fillings may also change colour as time passes and hence have to be polished or treated to achieve cosmetically viable results.

Discoloured fillings don’t just make an individual’s smile look unhealthy it also can affect the overall self-image and even one’s self-esteem. There are a number of dentists on Great North Road, in South Auckland, who provide quality dental health care services especially working on discoloured filling replacement.

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