Fillings FAQ

It wasn’t that long ago that dentists were limited by the materials they had available to restore a decayed tooth. There was a silver amalgam, which left a dark spot in your smile, or a flat white material that looked fake and unnatural.

Today, advances in dental materials and techniques have given us a tooth-colored composite resin that is every bit as durable as amalgam and is very close in appearance to natural tooth enamel. Since this material is a combination of plastic and glass particles, it blends beautifully with your teeth for a virtually invisible repair.

One advantage to composite fillings is that they can be closely color-matched to the shade of surrounding teeth. Another is that it won’t discolor over time as an amalgam filling does. Finally, tooth-colored fillings are a healthy choice because they allow us to preserve as much natural tooth structure as possible.

Since tooth-colored resin blends so flawlessly with your natural teeth, we can also use it for a procedure called cosmetic dental bonding. If you have a tooth that’s chipped or cracked, or you would like to alter the appearance of a tooth, bonding is a conservative, affordable choice for a mini smile makeover.

We choose tooth-colored fillings for our patients because of their strength and natural appearance. These fillings are durable, but they are not permanent and will need to be replaced every five to ten years. This may sound like a broad timespan, but there are several factors that come into play that affect the longevity of your restoration.

First, your teeth withstand a lot of wear and tear. The types of foods you eat, how well you take care of your teeth, and whether or not you grind your teeth can all affect the lifespan of your fillings.

But there are things you can do that will help preserve your restorations. You can’t expect a filling to last if you aren’t taking proper care of your teeth. That includes proper brushing and flossing and keeping your appointments for semi-annual dental exams and cleanings.

These preventive visits are also helpful because they ensure that your teeth are as clean and healthy as they can be. They also give our dentists the opportunity to check on the condition of your fillings to make sure they are strong and intact.

Tooth Filling Pain Relief. … In addition, toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth can help minimize the possible sensitivity and tooth pain after filling a cavity. If you have cavity symptoms, you may have pain in your teeth or in your gums. Cavity pain relief depends on the extent of your tooth decay.