The World's Oldest Filling: A Reason to Be Grateful for Modern Dentistry

May 24, 2017
Posted By: NOLA Dentures and General Dentistry
Dental history | fillings | Gretna LA

A recent article in New Scientist highlights a recent discovery about an ice age filling discovered in Italy made out of a natural, ancient form of asphalt. Hiding that filling when you smile would be difficult! 

Fortunately, when you seek family dentistry in the Gretna, LA area, you can count on a much more attractive and painless option. We offer dental fillings made of modern materials that blend in perfectly with your smile.

Why Tooth Decay Happens

Bacteria love sugar and carbohydrates because they need them to reproduce, which bacteria do at lightning speed! That is why brushing and flossing your teeth is so important. Within minutes after eating, bacteria begin to multiply. If you have ever missed a brushing or two, you probably noticed a sticky white film on your teeth. This is called plaque, and it's when left on your teeth for too long, it can harden into tartar, which is essentially hard cement-like debris that must be removed in the hygienist’s chair.

Plaque and tartar provide a perfect environment for bacteria to multiply. The byproducts of bacteria metabolic processes include an acidic substance that softens enamel, eventually unlocking the door to the internal structure of your tooth. When it progresses near the nerve, a cavity can become a painful nerve infection that requires an extraction or root canal therapy.

Decay Is Common but Preventable

With regular dental cleanings and an effective home care routine that includes brushing, flossing, and a healthy diet, you can usually avoid decay. Most of us will have at least one cavity during our lifetimes, though. When this occurs, Dr. Russell Schafer strives to diagnose it as quickly as possible so he can restore your health with a filling. Of course, in order for him to make this early diagnosis, you will need to come in for your appointments at least every six months.

Two Types of Fillings

We offer both silver (amalgam) and tooth-colored (composite) fillings in our Gretna, LA dental office. Dr. Schafer will happily explain the difference and help you make a choice that works well for you.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment!

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