A filling is a way to restore a tooth damaged by decay back to its normal function and shape. When a dentist gives you a filling, he or she first removes the decayed tooth material, cleans the affected area, and then fills the cleaned out cavity with a filling material. This protects the tooth from further damage in the future and ensures you can take steps to increase your level of oral hygiene to avoid future fillings.
No one type of filling is best for everyone. What's right for you will be determined by the extent of the repair, whether you have allergies to certain materials, where in your mouth the filling is needed, and the cost. Considerations for different materials include:
Gold Fillings are made to order in a laboratory and then cemented into place. Gold inlays are well tolerated by gum tissues, and may last more than 20 years. For these reasons, many authorities consider gold the best filling material. However, it is often the most expensive choice and requires multiple visits.
Amalgam (silver) fillings are resistant to wear and relatively inexpensive. However, due to their dark color, they are more noticeable than porcelain or composite restorations and are not usually used in very visible areas, such as front teeth.
Composite (plastic) resins are matched to be the same colour as your teeth and therefore used where a natural appearance is desired. The ingredients are mixed and placed directly into the cavity, where they harden. Composites may not be the ideal material for large fillings as they may chip or wear over time. They can also become stained from coffee, tea or tobacco, and do not last as long as other types of fillings generally from three to 10 years.
Porcelain Fillings are called inlays or onlays and are produced to order in a lab and then bonded to the tooth. They can be matched to the color of the tooth and resist staining. A porcelain restoration generally covers most of the tooth. Their cost is similar to gold.
One of our team can help advise you which filling will be best for your situation and advise you on costs for each.
The enamel on the top surface on your tooth, is the hardest part of your entire body.
A diet that is rich in vitamins, minerals and fresh fruit & vegetables can help prevent gum disease.
Visiting a Dentist twice a year is imperative for dental health.
Babies' teeth begin to develop before they are born, but in most cases don't come through until they're between 6 and 12 months old.
Floss or use an interdental brush every day to remove food, debris and plaque lodged between your teeth.
There are 32 adult teeth in total – 12 more than in the baby set.