Patients today have a number of different dental filling materials to choose from. At Randwick Smiles, we find composite resin or tooth coloured fillings to be the most versatile. They can be used for repairs and restorations and, being white, these tooth fillings can be used for restorations on the front teeth.
What Are Fillings Used For?
Tooth fillings are used to restore teeth that have been decayed, damaged, chipped, fractured or cracked. Fillings can also be used to restore teeth that have been ground down because of grinding.
What Kinds Of Fillings Are Available?
There are a number of different dental filling materials available today. These include
- Silver amalgam (a combination of tin, zinc, mercury, and copper)
- Composite resin (a tooth coloured restoration)
- Glass ionomer
Your dentist will guide you in selecting the most suitable material for your case once you have been assessed. At Randwick Smiles, we find that composite resin fillings are highly effective for a number of restorations.
What Happens When You Get A Filling?
Before your decayed tooth can be filled, your dentist must remove the decayed matter and clean it out. But because the tooth might be sensitive, the area will be injected with anaesthetic first.
Once the anaesthetic has taken effect, your dentist will remove the decayed matter from your tooth. Once he or she is satisfied that all the decay has been removed, the cavity will be cleaned out. In the event that the cavity is close to the nerve, a protective layer of glass ionomer or composite resin might need to be laid first.
If you are having a composite resin filling, the dental filling material will be placed in layers. Once the layering is complete, your dentist will use a light to harden the dental filling.
After it has hardened, your dentist will shape it down to a comfortable size and shape, so that is feels as natural as possible in your mouth.
The Benefits Of Tooth Coloured Fillings
A natural looking filling
Made from a combination of acrylic resin and powdered glass, tooth coloured fillings look natural and blend in with your natural teeth when they are done by a skilled dentist. Because they are tooth coloured, composite fillings are especially useful for restoring the front teeth.
Composite resin fillings are virtually unnoticeable when they are well matched to your natural teeth.
Useful for a variation of applications
Tooth coloured fillings can be used for tooth repairs when your teeth are worn down, broken or chipped, as well as for filling in decayed areas of your teeth. This makes composite resin a versatile material for restorations.
Your dentist will be able to polish and trim your filling so that it fits comfortably in your mouth. Composite resin offers a high level of customisation, making it ideal for different shapes and sizes.
Strong bonding for greater support
The way that composite resin bonds to your teeth makes it a very secure material with which to repair and restore teeth.
They are metal-free
Patients who want a metal-free alternative to amalgam fillings find white tooth fillings a safer option.
Not only that, in some cases tooth coloured fillings require less of your tooth structure to be removed in preparation, when compared to amalgam fillings.
What Should You Know About Tooth Coloured Fillings?
Composite resin fillings can last for five to ten years with good dental hygiene and regular visits to your dentist. Amalgams, by comparison can last for 15 years, and may be quicker to fit in the chair.
What Is The Safest Dental Filling Material?
While studies on the safety of amalgam fillings haven’t been conclusive, tooth coloured fillings provide a safe, natural and effective material with which to repair teeth.
While they tend to be the cheapest dental filling material amalgam fillings can contain up to 50% mercury.
How To Look After Tooth Coloured Fillings
Remember that composite resin can stain easily, so it’s essential that you maintain exemplary dental hygiene to keep them looking healthy.
Daily flossing and twice-daily brushing will keep your mouth clean and free of cavities. Check out our review of the top Oral B electric toothbrush if you’re interested in replacing your manual toothbrush with an automatic one. Regular dental check ups and cleanings will ensure that any early signs of decay are detected – so that hopefully you won’t need another filling on your next visit.
If you’re experiencing pain or sensitivity when biting, eating sugar or drinking hot or cold food and drink, you might need a filling.
Please contact our practice for the closest available appointment, we would love to help you: (02) 8188 4625.