At McKnight Signature Dental, we strive to help patients prevent common conditions whenever possible by providing reliable and high-quality preventive dental treatments. From dental cleanings to exams and x-rays, Drs. Abbie McKnight and Megan Konz strive to guide patients in developing the oral habits that protect smiles.
In reality, however, most of us will need a filling or crown at some point during our lives. When dental decay develops, or you break a tooth, our skilled dentists are here to repair your teeth with modern, tooth-colored options whenever possible.
The most common dental condition among children and adults alike is dental caries (decay). Dental decay develops when bacteria soften the enamel that protects teeth. Bacteria feed on sugar and starch found in the foods we eat. Fluoride toothpaste, regular brushing, a healthy diet, and flossing each day all support decay prevention.
At our Leawood dental office, we also offer sealants and fluoride varnish to protect the teeth for patients at a higher risk of developing decay. While these treatments are often associated with children, some of our adult patients also find these caries inhibiting treatments beneficial.
Your preventive dental appointments, including a check-up, cleaning, and routine x-rays will help Drs. McKnight and Konz identify decay in the earliest stages when treating it is far less complex than when it progresses deep into the tooth.
Advanced decay may require root canal treatment and a dental crown to protect the tooth.
The Composite Filling Process
In some situations, Drs. McKnight and Konz may use quiet, comfortable air abrasion to prepare a tooth for a filling or restoration. This technology sprays a stream of air and tiny abrasive particles to quickly and efficiently remove early tooth decay. Air abrasion eliminates the heat, noise, and vibration associated with dental drills and is so gentle that most patients don’t require anesthesia.
Our dentists dislike needles as much as you do, so they offer Oraqix needle-free numbing for periodontal procedures, including gum disease therapy!
Once we remove the decay from the tooth, your dentist will apply a bonding agent and select a composite color to match your natural tooth color. We apply the composite in layers and harden it with a curing light. Once the tooth is filled, your dentist will shape the composite to blend seamlessly with the tooth and polish it to a natural shine.
You will be able to eat right away, but if you are still numb, it is a good idea to exercise caution to avoid biting your lip or burning your tongue.
Benefits of Tooth-Colored Fillings
When compared with their amalgam counterparts, composite fillings have a number of benefits that go beyond their beautiful appearance.
Less invasive – Because they bond directly to the tooth, composite fillings require less removal of healthy tooth structure.
Long-lasting – Recent improvements to the materials available result in a dental filling that lasts a long time – as long as amalgam.
Bonding – Fillings can repair small chips and imperfections in the tooth.
Contact Us to Book an Appointment
If you believe you need a filling or it is time for your next dental appointment, give us a call. We welcome new patients and provide gentle dentistry for families in Leawood, Prairie Village, Overland Park, Kansas City, MO and surrounding areas.