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The goal of treating cavities involves two basic principals: removing the decayed portion of the tooth, and rebuilding the missing tooth structure with a filling material.

Ledet Dental will begin the procedure with an injection of local anesthetic (xylocaine in most cases). The tooth is isolated from the rest of the mouth, and in most cases, a high-speed dental drill is needed to remove the decay and prepare the tooth for the filling. Depending on which material is used, the dentist will vary the tooth preparation accordingly.

After the tooth has been prepared, a liner is often used to reduce tooth sensitivity. A liner is used in deep cavities to stimulate the dentin to regenerate and protect the dental pulp. In deeper fillings, a base is used in addition to the liner. The main purpose of the base is to insulate the tooth from temperature changes in the mouth.

After a tooth has been filled, it is not unusual for the tooth to be sensitive for a day or two. In general, the deeper the filling, the more likely the tooth will have prolonged sensitivity, especially to cold food or beverages. Most fillings should be completely comfortable within two weeks.

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