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Types of Dental Fillings

Often a tooth with a cavity can be restored with a dental filling, but did you know that there are several different types of materials that can be used. Is amalgam, gold, porcelain, and composite the best material to fill your tooth? Our Midland dentists explain the differences to help you decide which might be better for you.

Repairing Cavities & Restoring Smiles

There is a surprising variety of materials that can be used to create a dental filling and restore a tooth with a cavity. The most popular materials for dental fillings are amalgam, porcelain, gold, and composite resins. In addition to being safe and long-lasting, each of these materials has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. 

Composite Fillings

Composite fillings are plastic tooth-coloured fillings that look and feel natural when placed in a patient's mouth. 

Composite fillings are created to closely match the colour of your natural teeth, allowing them to blend in seamlessly with the rest of your smile. These materials are also relatively easy to shape and mould onto teeth, and because they bond naturally to teeth, your dentist will not have to remove as much existing enamel during the preparation process.

In order to place this type of filling, your dentist will first remove decay from the tooth and then apply bonding material to the inside of the cavity. Once that step is complete, thin layers of composite resin are poured into the prepared hole. With the help of a curing light, each layer hardens to a solid state. When the final layer of composite has hardened, your dentist will shape the filling so that it matches the shape of your natural teeth and allows for comfortable and problem-free chewing.

Porcelain Fillings

A strong, tooth-coloured dental restoration is created by combining hard and brittle porcelain fillings with metal, which results in a tooth-coloured dental restoration.

A porcelain filling is created in a dental lab and returned to your dentist, who cements it in place in your mouth. It is typically necessary to schedule at least two dental appointments in order to complete the procedure.

Amalgam Fillings

Silver in colour, amalgam fillings are frequently used to fill teeth located at the back of the mouth. They are a mixture of metals, including mercury, silver, copper, and tin, among others.

The silver colour may not be a popular choice for people who prefer a more natural appearance, however, amalgam fillings are a long-lasting option for molars that are subjected to a great deal of wear and tear.

Gold Fillings

In order to create a cast gold filling, a model of your tooth must be created. A mixture of gold and other metals, such as silver and copper, is used to create these pieces.

Much like porcelain fillings, this type of dental filling is made in a dental lab and then returned to your dentist, who cements it into place inside your mouth. As a result, this type of filling typically requires at least two dental appointments to complete.

If you'd like to learn more about the dental filling options available at Midland Family Dentistry, please contact our Midland dentists today to book an examination.

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