If you have a cavity, broken filling, or decayed dental restoration, this type of dental filling is well worth discussing with your dentist. When small or in noticeable areas, composite or tooth colored fillings can be placed as a satisfactory restoration. Composite fillings may also be used to enhance the appearance of any tooth.The composite resin will strengthen and enhance the natural tooth structure as it does with use as a dental filling.
The difference between amalgam and composite fillings
Tooth colored composite resin dental fillings were created as an alternative to traditional metal dental fillings. Tooth fillings colored to look like a natural tooth are known as Composite Fillings, are made of a resin. Composite Fillings are strong, durable, and make for a very natural looking smile. Tooth colored or composite fillings are not always the best option for the tooth but in many situations can function well for the patient. Most dental insurance plans cover Composite fillings.
How does your dentist complete a composite filling?
In most circumstances, your dentist will give you a local anesthetic to numb the area. A preparation is then made to access the decayed area of the tooth. The decay is then removed. This is accomplished with traditional drills, micro air abrasion or even with a dental laser. If the decay is close to the nerve of the tooth, a special liner is placed to help medicate and insulate the nerve.
A special dental tooth conditioner is then applied to the tooth to begin the restorative process. This conditioner cleans dentin and roughens up the surface of the exposed enamel. This achieves a strong bond between the tooth and filling. A bonding agent is then applied to the tooth. This material is made of a similiar material as the restorative material but flows much better and helps fill all areas of the exposed tooth. This layer is then cured with a high intensity light.
After completion of the filling, special articulating paper is placed between the teeth to help adjust the way the bite feels. The filling is then polished.
Once fillings become a certain size due to damage or decay. The filling is simply not enough to protect the damaged tooth. In this case your dentist will recommend a crown.
Tooth Colored Composite Fillings
There are no known health risks of receiving tooth colored fillings. Composite fillings were created as an alternative to traditional metal dental fillings. Direct restorations colored to look like a natural tooth are known as Composite Fillings, are made of a plastic dental resin. Tooth Colored Composite Fillings are strong, durable, and make for a very natural looking smile. Many dental insurance plans cover their use.
Amalgam fillings are often referred to as silver or metal fillings. Amalgam is the most durable and long lasting restorative material. Amalgam has been utilized for over 100 years and is still an excellent choice for restoration of teeth. In many instances an amalgam filling is a much better choice than composite for restoration of a tooth. For the most economical, strong and long lasting restoration, amalgam fillings are an excellent choice.
Crowns, Inlays and Onlays
If a tooth is fractured or has decay that is larger than a filling can adequately fix. An inlay, onlay or crown is something your dentist will recommend. These are necessary restorations to prolong the life of the tooth. Limitations exist with what fillings can adequately restore and many times full coverage restorations are necessary. Crowns can be tooth colored or gold.
Beautiful teeth will improve your smile... and your life
Cosmetic dentistry or restorative dental work is a gift to yourself.
We encourage you to contact us when you have an interest or concern about cosmetic dentistry procedures such as dentures, dental implants, porcelain veneers, and tooth whitening. Having Dr. Boone in Denver, Colorado do the work will give you a masterpiece you can shine on your friends and family every time you smile.
Dr. Malcolm E. Boone II, D.D.S., M.S.