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Types of Dental Fillings

October 7, 2011 — by Dental Associates
Tags: Tooth Colored Fillings Metal Fillings Dental Caries Cavities

It’s important that you take good care of your teeth and visit your dentist twice a year for your regular check-up. Doing so will ensure that issues with tooth decay are caught and dealt with early and that your teeth remain as healthy as possible. At our Boston cosmetic dentistry practice, we’ll be sure to address your needs and ensure your dental health is the best that it can be.

Dealing with Tooth Decay

Catching tooth decay early means fewer problems for you down the line. Here at our practice, our team of Boston cosmetic dentists use the latest diagnostic techniques at their disposal to ensure even small cavities are caught and addressed as soon as possible.

Dental Fillings and Their Importance

To treat small amounts of tooth decay, dental fillings are the most common option. Dental fillings will be used to restore decayed tooth structure, thus restoring the overall strength and integrity of a patient’s tooth.

Types of Dental Fillings

There are two types of dental fillings to consider: metal fillings and tooth-colored fillings. When it comes to best options for comprehensive dental care treatment, we wholeheartedly opt for the use of tooth-colored fillings. Let’s look at both options first and then discuss why one is better than the other.

Metal Fillings

Metal fillings are composed of a metal amalgam material. A tooth is first prepared for the filling by removing any damaged or decayed tooth structure and then the metal amalgam is allowed to set.

Tooth-Colored Fillings

Tooth-colored fillings are composed of a ceramic bonding material. Preparing a tooth for a tooth-colored filling is similar to the preparation for a metal filling.

Why Tooth-Colored Fillings are Superior

One of the biggest reasons that tooth-colored fillings are better than metal ones is that they are aesthetically appealing. When a tooth colored filling is in place, the filling will blend in seamlessly with the rest of the tooth. This is not so with the telltale dark gray color of metal fillings.

Aesthetics may be the most noticeable reason why tooth-colored fillings are superior to metal fillings, but it’s not the only reason. There are compelling dental health factors as well.

For one, metal fillings sometimes contain mercury, which is a highly toxic substance even in trace amounts. Tooth-colored fillings are entirely safe. In addition to this, less tooth structure needs to be removed when prepping a tooth to receive a tooth-colored filling. Finally, metal fillings can contract or expand to a certain degree in fluctuations of cold and hot temperatures. Tooth-colored fillings are fixed in size and shape.

Other Considerations for Dental Restorations

For major tooth decay, a traditional filling won’t cut it. It’s for that reason that dentists also offer inlays, onlays, and Boston dental crowns to deal with more substantial tooth decay. During your consultation at the office, we’ll be sure to go over all of your options for expert dental care.

Learn More About Dental Care Treatments

To learn more about dental fillings as well as the many other treatments we offer for tooth decay and other dental problems, be sure to contact our Boston area cosmetic dentistry practice today.