Composite fillings are a type of dental filling that is made of a resin material that is chemically bonded to the tooth. Originally, they were designed to fill cavities in front teeth, as they could be matched to the natural color of the tooth. Due to advancements in material technology over the last few decades, composite resin is now much stronger. Nowadays, composite fillings can be used in front and back teeth. At Fountainhead Dentistry, we use tooth colored composite resin almost exclusively. Composite fillings are also used to repair chips and cracks in teeth.
Benefits of Composite Fillings
There are several benefits to composite fillings, including:
- They are more aesthetically pleasing than other types of fillings, such as silver colored amalgam fillings. Composite fillings can be matched to the natural color of the tooth, making them less noticeable than other types of fillings. This is especially important for fillings in front teeth.
- They are durable and can last for many years. Composite fillings are made of a strong resin material that is bonded to the tooth. This makes them less likely to chip or crack.
- They are chemically bonded to the tooth. Composite fillings are bonded to the tooth with a special adhesive. This makes them less likely to come loose than other types of fillings, such as amalgam fillings.
- Unlike silver amalgam fillings, tooth colored resin composites do not contain or release any mercury.
- Composite fillings are chemically bonded to the tooth. Unlike silver fillings, which relied on the shape of the tooth preparation. This allows for more conservative drilling and less removal of your natural tooth structure.
Procedure for Composite Fillings
The procedure for placing a composite filling is as follows:
- Your dentist will anesthetize the area around the tooth that needs to be filled.
- Your dentist will select a shade of composite filling that best matches your teeth.
- Your dentist will prepare the tooth and remove the decayed or damaged tissue from the tooth.
- Your dentist will apply an acidic agent to the tooth to clean it and enhance the chemical bonding process.
- Your dentist will apply the bonding agent to the tooth, which allows the composite filling to chemically bond with the tooth.
- Your dentist will place the composite filling into the tooth and shape it to match your other teeth.
- Your dentist will use a curing light to harden the composite filling.
- Your dentist will polish the composite filling.
Cost of Composite Fillings
The cost of composite fillings varies depending on the dentist’s fees and the extent of the damage to the tooth. In general, composite fillings are the same cost as traditional amalgam fillings. Most insurance plans cover the majority of the cost involved for a composite filling.
Composite fillings are a safe and effective way to repair cavities and other damage to teeth. They are more aesthetically pleasing than other types of fillings, and they are durable and long-lasting. If you have a cavity or other damage to your tooth, talk to your dentist about whether a composite filling is right for you.
Composite Fillings FAQs
What are the different types of composite fillings?
There are two main methods of doing composite fillings: direct and indirect. Direct composite fillings are placed in the mouth by the dentist. Indirect composite fillings are typically made in a dental laboratory and then cemented into place by the dentist.
What are the benefits of composite fillings?
Composite fillings are durable, long-lasting, and aesthetically pleasing. They are also less likely to cause tooth sensitivity than other types of fillings.
What are the risks of composite fillings?
The risks of composite fillings are minimal. However, there is a small chance that the filling may chip or crack. There is also a small chance that the filling may discolor over time. As with any dental restoration, there is always the risk of eventual breakdown of the filling and the need for replacement.
What is the aftercare for composite fillings?
After you have had a composite filling placed, it is important to follow your dentist’s instructions for aftercare. This may include avoiding certain foods and drinks, and brushing and flossing your teeth regularly.
For more information or to request an appointment, contact us.