What are tooth fillings?
Tooth filling is a method we use to restore a tooth that has been damaged by decay. By using teeth fillings, we are able to repair a tooth that has lost its normal shape as well as remove any remaining cavities in the tooth.
During this procedure, we completely remove the decayed portion of the tooth, clean the affected cavity left behind and then fill it using a dental filler.
By inserting fillings, we seal any spaces or cavities in the tooth that, if left exposed, would allow bacteria to enter the cavity resulting in further decay. In some severe cases, tooth decay can lead to the entire destruction of the tooth.
We use different types of materials as fillers; the filling material selected depends on the extent of the damage and/or the client’s choice of filler (which usually depends on their budget).
It is worth noting that the fillers we use vary in a number of ways, and no particular type of filler is better than another. Some of our patients are allergic to certain materials, while others may not be appropriate depending on the type of damage to the tooth.
We offer the following types of fillings:
This type of filling is made in a laboratory. It is then applied and cemented into a patient’s cavity. Gold fillings are one of the most expensive fillings available. This filling procedure is completed over a number of visits.
Some of the advantages of using gold fillings include that this material will not corrode, it is very durable and can last up to 20 years because it can withstand the impact of constant chewing.
An amalgam filling is made from a mixture of silver, tin, copper, zinc and mercury. Mercury constitutes nearly 50% of the mixture. It is also resistant to wear; for this reason, it is a relatively expensive option. Unfortunately, due to its dark colour, this kind of filling is very visible. It is not recommended for areas that are very visible (e.g. front teeth). We also offer a mercury free option.
Some advantages of amalgam fillings include their strength and ability to withstand force from chewing. The filling procedure is simple, and only takes one visit to complete.
How Will I Know if I Need a Filling?
Only a professional dentist can tell when a tooth needs to be filled. During your dental checkup, a dentist will examine the surface of each tooth and identify any abnormalities. We may also recommend an x-ray of your mouth to identify signs of tooth damage caused by tooth decay that cannot be seen clinically. We then recommend the best filling options for you depending on the extent of the damage on the tooth.
Call our family dentistry practice to set up a consultation and learn more about the process.