One of the most common sounds associated with a dental office is that of the dentist’s drill. At Peters Dental Associates in Houston, TX, patients cringe at the idea of having the drill used in their smile. Many ask why their dentist is using a drill when addressing areas of decay. Tooth decay is essentially the development of holes within the structure of the tooth that needs to be filled to avoid further spread and damage. Patients often ask, why is a drill needed when a hole already exists?
Cavities are not only holes that are present in the enamel of a tooth. Cavities are also areas where bacteria can reside, which causes the decay. When bacteria is not removed from the area of decay, it can continue to spread and cause infection within the tooth as well as larger areas of decay.
Why is a dental drill used?
A dental drill will not only remove the decayed portion of the tooth, but it can make a hole in the tooth large enough for the dentist to place a filling. This is necessary to ensure the filling stays in place and keeps the decay from becoming a problem later on down the road.
What if decay is too large to effectively be treated with a dental filling?
There are times when areas of decay are incredibly large due to poor oral hygiene and lack of dental treatment. When this happens, many patients will experience an infection in their tooth or extreme pain called a toothache. At this point, many patients may need root canal therapy as a way to salvage the natural tooth. Otherwise, extraction may be needed. Patients who proactively care for their smile and visit their dentist regularly will greatly reduce their chances of requiring extraction due to large areas of decay.
Learn more about dental fillings with the team of Peters Dental Associates
Houston, TX patients who visit Peters Dental Associates will learn about ways in which our team takes care of the smile, including the placement of dental fillings to address tooth decay. Call Dr. M.H. Peters, Jr. today at (281) 486-8061 and visit the practice at 2508 Bay Area Boulevard, Suite 100. Our practice invites new patients and families seeking dental care in the community.