Fillings are used to repair a tooth damaged by decay, cracks, and minor fractures. They come in a wide variety of materials, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. The excellent durability of silver amalgam fillings often makes them a good choice. Unfortunately, they are also easily visible in contrast to the natural white color of teeth. The advantage of a composite filling is its natural tooth coloration which allows it to become essentially invisible, often making it the best choice for use in highly visible areas. Should you choose a composite filling, the dentist will closely match the color of the filling to that of your existing teeth to ensure the continued beauty of your smile.
What can this procedure repair?
- Tooth decay
- Chipped teeth
- Wide spaces between teeth
- Cracked or broken teeth
- Worn teeth
How is the procedure done?
Composite fillings can usually be placed in one appointment. The dentist will numb the tooth and remove decay. Then it will be thoroughly cleaned and carefully prepared for the new filling. In some cases where they decay comes close to the nerve of the tooth, special medication will be applied for added protection. Once the tooth is prepared, the dentist precisely places, sculpts, and polishes the composite filling, restoring your tooth to its original shape and function.
What kind of follow up care should I expect?
Initially, many people experience sensitivity to hot and cold when the composite filling is first placed. This is temporary, however, and it will fade quickly as your tooth acclimates to the new filling. The dentist will provide general care instructions, and the regular practice of brushing, flossing, and dental cleanings will help extend the life of your new filling. While composite fillings are durable enough to last for many years, they are not permanent and may someday need to be replaced.