Fillings Q & A
What Is a Filling?
A filling is a simple procedure that is used to help restore teeth that have been damaged by decay. During your appointment, Dr. Donia will remove any decayed portion of the tooth leaving a hole or gap. The gap is then covered by a filling material.
What Are Some Different Kinds of Filling Materials?
There are four main types of filling materials: porcelain, composite resin, gold, and silver amalgam. Porcelain fillings are desirable since they are the color of your teeth and are able to resist staining over time. However, porcelain fillings are quite expensive. Composite resin fillings are also the color of your teeth but are much more likely to decay over a relatively a period of 3-10 years and will also become stained from food and drink.
Gold fillings are one of the most durable filling materials with a shelf life of over 20 years. However, gold fillings are also the most expensive type of filling. A silver amalgam filling is much cheaper and has similar wear resistance. However, silver has a dark appearance and most people are only willing to apply it to their back molars to protect aesthetics.
What Are Indirect Fillings?
Indirect fillings are used in cases of extensive tooth damage where there is not enough tooth left to support a traditional dental filling. Indirect fillings are made in a laboratory using a special impression of your mouth in order for them to fit exactly into the space. Because they are custom-made, they are typically much more durable than traditional fillings and have a shelf-life of up to 30 years.
How Do You Know if You Need a Filling?
Your dentist is the only one who can determine if you need a filling and what kind would best suit your needs. Typically, patients with cavities or a chipped tooth are prime candidates for a filling. During every dental exam, Dr. Donia will examine your teeth to see if there is any decay present.