General Dental

Tooth Fillings

We are offering white filling material, know as composite resin, that decreases the risk of teeth fracturing and breaking. If you have defective metallic fillings, cracks or broken teeth, please contact our surgery.

When a tooth has been compromised with a cavity or dental decay, more and more of the tooth will be damaged until your dentist has removed all of the decay. A dental filling repairs the damage to the tooth that was caused by decay and helps to prevent any more bacteria entering the tooth.
 

Types of tooth filling

If you require a filling, there are a variety of materials that may be used to repair your tooth, each having its advantages and unique properties. There are many factors that your dentist will take into consideration when selecting which material to use, such as the strength of the material, the type of tooth, and the alignment of your teeth.

Types of materials that may be used:

Amalgam

Amalgam fillings are incredibly durable but require more tooth structure to be removed. An amalgam filling consists of a mix of metal alloys that are initially soft but harden once they are in place. They do contain minute traces of mercury, which is bound the moment the filling is placed. There is no risk of mercury poisoning and there are no reports of patients with metal fillings showing any signs of mercury poisoning. They are used due to their superior strength and their long lasting results for tens of years.

Composite

Composite fillings are popular due to their natural, tooth-coloured appearance. They are made up of a resin material and are malleable so it can be easily shaped to fit the cavity. While they typically don’t last as long as amalgam fillings, composite fillings are ‘glued’ to the surface of the tooth for extra support. Your dentist will match the colour of the filling to the colour of the existing tooth structure, which makes them almost invisible.

Gold

Gold fillings tend to be the most long-lasting and durable alternative but are not commonly used. The cost of a gold filling is typically much higher due to the preparation and manufacturing time required.

Temporary

Temporary fillings are used when multiple appointments on one tooth are required or if there is not enough time to complete treatment or you are undergoing emergency treatment.


 

How to tell when you need a filling

If your dentist recommends for you to have a filling, they will first remove the decay and clean the affected area. They will then fill the cavity with any of the materials listed above.

If decay or a fracture has damaged a significant portion of the tooth, your dentist may recommend that the tooth be crowned instead. If the nerve of the tooth has been affected, your dentist will usually recommend that the tooth either receive root canal therapy, where they remove the damaged nerve or through a treatment called pulp capping, which aims to keep the nerve of the tooth alive.
 

Looking after you tooth fillings

Over time, constant wear and tear can lead to fillings needing to be replaced. If you are seeing your dentist regularly, they’ll be able to examine your fillings and make sure that the seal is still intact and will be able to look after any potential issues before they become a problem.

If you have recently had a filling placed and are experiencing pain, sensitivity, or it feels ‘high,’ make sure that you organise an appointment to have it attended to.

 

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We offer a wide range of treatments to suit your dental needs

 

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