If you have a cavity, your dentist may recommend a tooth filling. A tooth filling restores your tooth to a functional shape and strength. While they are most often used to fill in cavities, fillings can also be used to repair broken, chipped, or cracked teeth.
Since all mouths are different, there are many types of fillings. They type of filling that is good for your neighbor may not be good for you. Thus, there is no shortage of filling options available to you. At Chicago Veneers, Dr. Ema will work closely with you to determine the right type of filling for you and your teeth.
Types of filling Materials:
- Amalgam: Amalgam fillings are made up of a mixture of metals. They are generally comprised of mercury, tin, copper, zinc, and/or silver. While they do have their drawbacks, amalgam fillings are the cheapest type of filling, and they are strong and long-lasting. The FDA has deemed the amount of mercury in amalgam fillings safe for people over the age of six.
- Gold: Gold is one of the most durable types of fillings available to you. Usually used for indirect fillings, gold fillings will usually take longer to put in place, and they are among the most expensive types of fillings. However, gold fillings can last up to 20 years.
- Porcelain: Porcelain fillings are expensive and are much more fragile that gold or other filling options. However, they look like natural teeth and can help you achieve a natural-looking smile.
- Tooth-Colored / Composite: A composite filling is usually made of glass or an acrylic resin, which can be made to match the color of your natural teeth. Like porcelain, however, composite fillings are fragile and are best suited for small areas or areas that do not experience a lot of natural wear from the stress of chewing.
- Glass or resin ionomer: glass or resin ionomer fillings are generally used in children to fill in small areas of decay. This type of filling is also very fragile, so if it is used on permanent teeth, it generally used on areas that are not subject to a lot of natural wear.
Every filling option has its merits, and no filling type is necessarily better than the other. Instead, you and Dr. Ema will carefully consider the placement of the filling, the reason for the filling, and your overall oral health goals when deciding which option is best suited to fit your needs.
What Are Fillings Used For
- Protect an area of decay like a cavity
- Restore cracks or breaks in your teeth
- Change the shape or size of your teeth (tooth colored/composite filling material is especially good at this)
If you need a filling because of a cavity, Dr. Ema at Chicago Veneers will first numb the surrounding area so that you do not feel any pain. Your dentist will then remove the decayed material and clean the remaining area of the tooth. After this is completed, the cavity left by the removal of decayed tooth material will be filled with a filling material to prevent further decay.
At Chicago Veneers, Dr. Ema is highly-trained and experienced in fillings for both cavities and cosmetic reasons and will work with you to ensure that you receive the high-quality dental care that you deserve. Your oral health is her top priority!