Most people know that cavities are bad and that dentists replace them with “fillings,” but many don’t fully grasp why the filling is necessary in the first place.
When your dentist detects a cavity in your smile, it means you actually have a tiny hole in your tooth as the result of bacteria eating away at your tooth enamel. The longer you leave a cavity untreated, the bigger it gets.
To protect the integrity of your compromised tooth, your St. Paul dentist has to scrape out the decayed material and bacteria. Once they complete this process, your tooth is left more vulnerable and fragile than it was before. Because there is inherently less tooth structure left behind, your tooth can’t withstand forces from chewing as well as it once did.
This is where dental fillings come in. Fillings literally “fill” up the space left behind in your tooth once the decay is gone. Your tooth becomes partially hollow before receiving a dental filling, and then the artificial material goes inside your tooth to support and strengthen it.
St. Paul dental fillings play an essential role in protecting and preserving natural teeth. Without a little help from durable tooth fillings, dentists would have to extract many compromised natural teeth.