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A filling is a way to restore a tooth damaged by decay back to its normal function and shape. It also helps prevent further decay by closing off spaces where bacteria can enter.

If Dr. Straka determines that one of your teeth needs a filling, he first removes the decayed tooth material, cleans the affected area, and then fills the cavity prep with a filling material. Materials used for fillings include gold, porcelain and a composite resin (tooth-colored filling material). The type of material used is determined by the extent of the repair, allergies you might have, where the filling is needed in your mouth, and the cost.

If decay or a fracture has damaged a large portion of the tooth, a crown, or cap, may be recommended. Decay that has reached the nerve may be treated in two ways: through root canal therapy (in which nerve damaged nerve is removed) or through a procedure called pulp capping (which attempts to keep the nerve alive).

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