Treatment Options for Dental Fillings

At a recent dental exam, Dr. Eric Hogan may have informed you that you have a cavity and need a dental filling.  If you have never had a dental filling placed before, you may have a few questions.  We would like to take this opportunity to explain your treatment options and what to expect during your restorative appointment. To learn more about dental fillings at his friendly Miles City, MT, dental practice, please get in touch with us today.

Types of Fillings

Historically, gold, amalgam and composite restorations have been offered to treat dental cavities.  At Hogan Family Dental, we offer both composite and amalgam restorations to our patients.  Both restorations have benefits, depending on your clinical situation, aesthetic preferences, and your financial considerations.

Illustration of types of dental fillings

Composite Restorations

If your expectation is a natural looking tooth, a composite restoration would be an excellent choice.  Composite restorations are indicated when a bonded restoration is needed.  Composite restorations have the added benefit of adhering to your tooth both chemically and mechanically which assists in long term retention of your filling. 

During your treatment procedure, Dr. Eric Hogan and his assistants will choose a complementary shade to match the treatment area for optimal blending of the filling in your tooth. Dr. Eric expects that you will be able to pass floss easily around your new composite restoration and that your biting forces are distributed equally.  Your final restoration will be smoothed and polished on all surfaces to ensure a seamless blend with your natural tooth. 

Amalgam (Silver) Restorations

Amalgam restorations are the best choice when a restoration must be placed in a moist environment.  Dr. Eric may suggest an amalgam restoration when cavities are found in the following circumstances:  a  patient has a lower back molar that is not fully erupted, deciduous (baby) teeth, cavities around porcelain-fused-metal crowns or when cost is a concern. 

Amalgam restorations are commonly used in many offices and do offer clinical advantages in specific situations.  Amalgam restorations do require 24 hours to achieve a final set.  Please avoid hard, chewy foods for 24 hours after your amalgam filling has been placed.

What to Expect During a Filling Appointment

Dr. Eric Hogan will ensure that all of your questions regarding treatment and financial considerations have been answered.  

Local Anesthesia

Both topical and local anesthesia will be used to anesthetize (numb) the treatment area.  Dr. Eric Hogan will make sure that you are completely anesthetized if that  is what you prefer.  

Decay Removal

Once you are displaying signs of complete dental anesthesia, Dr. Eric Hogan will remove the dental cavity and any restorations that need to be removed to render the best clinical result. 

Smoothing & Shaping

Depending on the material you choose, he will place the new restoration and shape the restoration to mimic the anatomy present in a healthy, non-restored tooth. 

Bite Reevaluation

Dr. Eric Hogan will reevaluate your bite to make sure you are biting on all of your teeth equally to ensure long-term success of your restoration as well as your overall patient comfort. 

After Treatment

The effects of dental anesthesia usually take 2-3 hours to disappear completely.  Please be careful to avoid biting your lips, cheeks and tongue until your tissues return to normal feeling.  We have a numb-reversing agent available upon request.

In general, feeling sensitivity to temperature with a new filling is normal.  This sensation may last up to three weeks after treatment.  Dental treatment by Dr. Eric Hogan is considered a microsurgical procedure.  After any surgery, healing time is required.

Contact Us

We would be happy to meet your restorative dental needs.  Dr. Eric Hogan will gladly arrange a consultation to visit with you if you have additional questions that need to be answered by him personally. Please contact us at (406) 234-2926 to schedule an appointment or if you have questions regarding financial arrangements.

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