Daily we hear, "how long can I wait?" to have this filling done. The truth is, as long as you want. You can wait until the decay reaches the nerve and causes pain and then, eventually, requires a root canal or extraction to remedy the situation. If you are pain tolerant, you may power through the discomfort of a toothache and end up with an abscess that lands you in the emergency room; we see these severe cases about once a year. In other words, and in most cases, you shouldn't wait.
It is possible to remineralize very shallow beginnings of tooth decay where a "hole" in the tooth, or cavitation, has not occurred yet. These areas generally appear as a whitened spot. By using products that contain calcium phosphate, reducing the pH in the mouth with diet, and making sure saliva flow is adequate, we have seen success, but it takes patient effort and dedication to reverse the damage of tooth decay. Silver Diamine Fluoride can be applied to tooth decay. Repeated applications of it cause tooth decay to become hardened and arrested, but the side effect is the tooth becomes blackened.
Having a filling done in the early stages is much less expensive and relatively easy. No one can predict exactly how much time you have before decay becomes a bigger problem. Diet, genetics, homecare and frequency of professional cleanings are factors. Why wait and complicate matters? See your dentist or call us today!
Lake Grove Dental
16455 Boones Ferry Rd.
Lake Oswego, OR 97035