When tooth decay strikes and leaves behind cavities, dental fillings are the best way to halt the process and restore teeth to normal functioning. Take a look at just what materials are used to get this important job done.
Composite resins closely mimic the look of healthy teeth to blend in well with the rest of your smile. Their ability to “cure” quickly and perfectly fit the shape of a tooth means that composite resin fillings take a relatively short amount of time to complete.
Although newer types of composite resin fillings are much stronger than those used in the past, they may still prove to be less durable than traditional metal amalgam fillings. Also, the composite resin has a greater tendency to stain over time than other tooth-colored filling options.
The most common type of dental filling material, dentists have used silver-colored metal amalgam for more than a century. Its biggest advantage comes from its practicality: Amalgam fillings are usually the least expensive option and can be more durable and longer lasting than more natural-looking options.
Unfortunately, because of their color, amalgam fillings stand out and are not always the best choice for teeth at the front of your smile. Also, in some cases, your dentist may need to drill a bigger hole to properly accommodate a new amalgam filling.
Because gold doesn’t tarnish or corrode, gold fillings last longer than other traditional filling materials, including amalgam. However, gold fillings are very expensive and usually required multiple visits to complete.
Ceramics, such as porcelain, look like normal teeth and are sometimes considered the most aesthetically pleasing option for fillings, as they are much less likely to stain and tend to retain their look over time. Unfortunately, porcelain is fairly brittle and these fillings often need replacement sooner than other types.
Not sure which is right for you? Make sure to contact us and schedule your appointment today!