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What if, despite your best efforts to care for your pearly whites (daily brushing and flossing along with regular dental cleanings) you feel pain when you chew your food, have a tooth that is sensitive to hot and cold, or a toothache that isn’t getting better? Turns out, you may have developed dental caries, and if that is the case, you are not alone.

Dental caries, or cavities, are holes that can form in your teeth from the effects of bacterial plaque. Plaque is that clear, sticky film which forms on your teeth. The damage to your teeth occurs when plaque releases acids that corrode tooth enamel and the layer of tooth beneath it, known as dentin. Over time, the cavities will grow and go deeper. They can form between the teeth, on the root surface of a tooth, and most frequently, on the top (or biting surface) of the teeth.

If this is happening to you, we can help! Our dedicated dentist, Dr. Rita D. Wright will restore your tooth’s natural function by removing the decay in the tooth and filling the hole left behind. We offer two of the common fillings, amalgam fillings and composite fillings. So if you are experiencing a problem with a tooth and come in for a filling, here is what you might expect to have happen. We will:

–Determine the extent of the tooth decay and help you decide on the type of dental filling to use to restore your smile.

–Give you a local anesthetic to numb the area surrounding the affected tooth.

–Cut through the tooth enamel to clean out all decayed tissue.

–Shape the area to be filled with the filling material.

–If we are applying a bonded filling, we will use an acid gel to prepare the tooth for the filling.

–For other types of fillings, we will layer resin on the tooth with a “curing” light to harden the filling material.

–After the filling has been set to fit your bite, we will finish the process by polishing your tooth.

Your tooth, once it is restored, will function as good as new! To help you with any problems you are experiencing with your teeth, we invite you to come in and have Dr. Wright take a look. You can reach our Wright Smile Center of Woodbridge team in Woodbridge, Virginia at 703-878-7883 today.