The American Dental Association (ADA) has asked dentists to defer all elective treatment at this time, and only provide emergency services. This is to help preserve protective equipment (masks, gowns, gloves, etc.) for hospitals and urgent care centers as well as limit the spread of the virus. We are keeping a limited number of locations open to provide emergency dental services, to both help you and reduce the traffic to Emergency Rooms (ERs) and urgent care centers so that they can focus on non-dental emergencies. If you are in pain and need emergency dental treatment, please call (702) 744-8009 and we can assist you right away.

Home » Dental Services » Las Vegas » Tooth Fillings

Child getting dental filling Why are Fillings Necessary?

Bacteria find their way into your mouth from many different sources. Over time, bacteria forms layers called plaque over parts of your teeth. Every day that you let this bacteria live in your mouth, they release acid. This acid wears your teeth down and causes decay.

In time, tooth decay will cause holes in your teeth. That’s what cavities are. Your teeth cannot repair themselves from cavities but Las Vegas dentists can help.

How are Fillings Done?

Fillings are simple in concept.

  1. After a tooth cleaning to remove plaque buildup
  2. A drill is used to follow the path made by bacteria. All bacteria will be drilled out.
  3. The hole in the tooth is refilled by a hard, tooth-like barrier.  The material used in fillings can be selected by yourself or your dentist.
  4. The barrier keeps more bacteria from re-entering the hole, where brushing can’t affect it.

Before drilling, your dentist will numb your tooth to make the procedure painless. This will commonly be accomplished with the use of a numbing gel, then an anesthetic shot so the drill won’t hurt.
After having a tooth filled, your mouth will likely be numb for a few hours. The feeling is unusual, but not at all bad. If you’ve never experienced it before, you’ll enjoy exploring that part of your mouth with your tongue, not feeling a thing.

Why are Fillings So Scary?

Because of the shot and the drill. Everyone knows the sound of a dentists drill whining. And yes, it used to hurt. Even as recently as thirty years ago, anesthetic and application techniques were still a little uncertain. Presently, the science of painkillers has reached a high level of technological expertise.  Most customers are not actually afraid of pain from the drill… they’re afraid of pain from the shot used to deliver the painkiller!
Pain during the shot is closely related to the skills of the dentist.  Empathy is just as important as technical expertise.  If your dentist believes that shots do not have to be painful, he will work conscientiously towards the goal of making shots painless. He should tell you exactly what to expect, and use the technique that will work best for you.  Common techniques involve drying the area, using numbing gel, or small distractions for the patient.
And remember, whether the shot hurts a little, a lot, or not at all, it’s very likely to be the only pain you’ll experience in your whole stay at your dentist. You’ll feel the pressure of the drill, you’ll hear the whine, and you’ll likely smell the tooth being whisked away but it won’t hurt.

Types of Fillings


A newer technology that resembles modeling clay, composite fillings are synthetic resins that become tooth-colored when hardened.  No controversy surrounds the use of composite fillings, but it’s well known that a composite will not last as long as an amalgam filling.  The technology continues to improve, so it is likely that composite fillings will someday equal or exceed amalgam fillings in longevity and strength. Absolute Dental will respect the wishes of its clients, and offers these pro and con resources for the curious (We take no responsibility for the opinions expressed in these articles):

From my exam to my fillings, so far the experience with Absolute Dental has been nothing but spectacular. The staff is really friendly and knowledgeable. The service performed was superb, quick and painless. After searching/trying out a few places in Vegas, I think I finally found the one that will have me as a returning patient. Thanks!

Aleksa D.

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