Types of Dental Fillings and Who Needs Them?

Types of Dental Fillings and Who Needs Them?

Jul 01, 2020

A dental filling is an artificial substance that restores the shape and healthy function of a tooth that has been damaged by decay. During the procedure, the dentist removes the decayed material in the tooth, cleans the area, and finally fills the cavity with the filling material.

It prevents further decay since it closes the spaces that bacteria would use as entry points. Below are some of the types of dental fillings that you will be offered when you visit any dentist near you.

Types of Dental Fillings

Materials that are used to fill the cavities come in wide varieties. They may have different strengths and colors as various fillings are suited for different conditions. Let’s take a look at the five main types.

  • Composite Fillings

Composite filling material is the main type used for dental fillings. It is also known as filled resins or composites. The filling material contains different resins that are in a semi-solid state.

Composite fillings are durable for a fair amount of time, and they are popular because they can match the color of your teeth when colored. A bright and blue curing light that acts as a catalyst is used to help make the material harder so that the cavity can be completely covered.

  • Silver Amalgam Fillings

Dentists have been using amalgam fillings to fill the cavities since the previous century. The material that makes amalgam is composed of different metals like tin, copper, mercury, and silver. This type of filling is highly recommended because of its safety, durability, and it’s not expensive.

  • Glass Ionomer fillings

It is made from acrylic and fluor aluminosilicate. The dentists in Longmont recommend these fillings to children who are at the stage of shedding their teeth.

This material is used when the cavities to be filled are small. A glass ionomer filling can last for five years or less. This type of filling is unique; unlike the other fillers, it releases fluoride on the cavity preventing the tooth from experiencing further decay.

  • Ceramic fillings

Ceramic fillings are long-lasting and aesthetically attractive. This makes them a bit more expensive. They are made out of porcelain. Its color resembles that of the tooth, and its resistance to staining and abrasion is quite high. Ceramic dental restorations are referred to as Inlays or Onlays.

  • Gold Fillings

They can last for fifteen years or even more, and are not corrosive. They are made up of copper, gold, and other metals. This is the most expensive type of filling.

What to Expect During a Filling Appointment

  • Local anesthesia may be administered at the beginning of the procedure to numb the tooth area
  • Tooth decay removal from the enamel will be done using a drill. Afterward, the space will be reshaped to make it ready for the filling.
  • Etching – An acid gel is used to etch the tooth before the dentist places the filling.
  • Resin application – For some fillings, the dentist will apply resin on the tooth and use a bright light to harden it. It helps to make the filling strong.
  • Polishing – Your tooth will be polished after the filling.

How Do You Know You Are a Viable Candidate for Tooth Filling?

Some signs and symptoms are common if you have a cavity that might require filling.

  • The tooth may become sensitive when it encounters cold or hot temperatures or sticky, sour, and sweet foods
  • Sharp or throbbing pain might be experienced
  • You may feel pain when biting or chewing food
  • A dark spot or a hole is visible on your tooth. The gap can even be felt by your tongue.
  • During flossing, the affected tooth tears the string
  • When eating, food gets stuck in between the teeth
  • The tooth may feel rough
  • The existing tooth filling may be broken or cracked
  • If your tooth is fractured or chipped

Dr. Brian Coats DDS is a dental office in Longmont, CO, where they offer services such as dental fillings, cosmetic dentistry, teeth whitening, pediatric dentistry, and many more. We provide dental education to your children. Once you book an appointment with us, our goal is to ensure that at the end of the day, all your needs are attended to professionally and in a caring and friendly manner.