Different Types of Cavity Fillings
There are many different types of materials used to fill cavities and otherwise repair your teeth. Some, however, are more popular than others. Here are a few types of products that your dentist may use to fix your teeth and what you should know about them.
- Amalgam: Because it’s been used for over a century, this is the material you probably associate with getting a dental filling. Amalgam fillings, which are made from a combination of mercury and silver, can last for 15 to 20 years. However, due to their silver colour, they’re very noticeable, so they’re mainly used for molar teeth.
- Composite: This type of filling is made from a resin that’s applied in layers to the cavity and cured with a special type of light. The advantage of composite fillings is that they can be made to perfectly match the colour of the tooth, making it ideal for front teeth. However, they don’t last as long as amalgam and need to be replaced every five to ten years.
- Ceramic: Like composite, ceramic fillings can be made to perfectly match the colour of the teeth. They may last more than 15 years but are one of the more expensive filling materials available.
- Glass ionomer: Made of acrylic and a special type of glass material, this type of filling is usually used for cavities below the gum line and for young children. The material releases fluoride naturally, which helps to protect the tooth from further decay. Weaker than other materials, glass ionomer fillings need to be replaced every five years.
- Gold: This precious metal is strong, durable and won’t corrode over time. Many people prefer the look of gold fillings to silver ones. However, they’re significantly more expensive than any other filling material and require two appointments to be placed.
Which Is Best?
At Heritage Dental Centre, a general dentistry clinic in South Edmonton, we prefer to use composite fillings in most cases. While all materials have advantages, we feel that composite is best because they’re strong, long lasting and extremely subtle. No matter where your cavity is, the filling will never be noticed by the naked eye.
Family Dentistry in South Edmonton