Silver coloured, or amalgam fillings have been in use for many decades, and although durable and cost-effective, they don’t always look very pretty. Luckily, there is an alternative as we can provide beautiful tooth coloured fillings in Oshawa.
What Are Tooth Coloured Fillings?
Tooth coloured fillings are made from a material called composite resin, or from porcelain. Composite resin fillings are suitable for small to medium-sized cavities, while porcelain fillings are suitable for larger cavities, usually those in the chewing surfaces of back teeth. Both types of fillings are available in many different shades that closely mimic the appearance of natural tooth enamel. Once in the mouth, tooth coloured fillings are virtually invisible.
Tooth Coloured Fillings are Biomimetic
There’s another advantage to choosing tooth coloured fillings as they can be healthier for your teeth because they are made from what are called biomimetic materials. These materials are designed to replicate natural tooth structures, including enamel and dentin closely and to bond more strongly with the tooth. Having a good bond between the tooth and the filling helps to seal out bacteria that can cause decay and infection.
Tooth enamel is the hard, outer covering of a tooth that protects it and prevents bacteria from entering the structure underneath, which is called dentin. Dentin is much softer and consists of tightly packed microscopic tubules, and it surrounds the centre of the tooth that contains the nerve. If your tooth enamel is damaged, it lets in disease-causing bacteria that destroy dentin. Also, a cavity in a tooth allows sensations of hot and cold to reach the tooth nerve more easily, which is why damaged and decaying teeth can begin to ache.
Natural-looking and Durable
Porcelain fillings closely replicate tooth enamel, and tooth coloured composite resins are very similar to dentin. The porcelain used to create fillings is extremely strong, durable and long-lasting, and these fillings can look amazing. Tooth coloured composite resin is made from a plastic material and fillers that include silica, a type of glass. The silica helps to ensure the filling material has excellent translucency and wear resistance so that it can cope with the forces created when you bite and chew.
Preserving and Protecting Your Teeth
The preparation process for a tooth coloured filling is a bit different to an amalgam filling. With an amalgam filling, the dentist must remove the damaged portion of the tooth as well as some healthy material, creating an undercut in the cavity to hold the filling in place. With tooth coloured fillings in Ajax, only the damaged portion of the tooth is removed, leaving all the healthy structure intact. Because the bond between the tooth coloured filling in the tooth is so strong, it helps to protect your tooth against further damage.
Composite Resin or Porcelain?
The filling recommended by our dentist in Whitby will largely depend on the size and location of the filling. Small cavities in front teeth are easily repaired with composite resin, whereas larger cavities need the additional strength supplied by a porcelain filling. Although porcelain fillings are a little more expensive, they are longer lasting because of their strength and durability. Usually, composite resin fillings need replacing every few years, and they can become stained if you like highly coloured foods and drinks.
Should I Replace My Amalgam Fillings?
If you have amalgam fillings, we will monitor their condition to make sure they aren’t crumbling or leaking and will recommend their replacement at the appropriate time. All types of fillings need replacing periodically. However, if you would prefer to have tooth coloured fillings now, it’s worth discussing this option with our dentist during your next visit to Margolian Dentistry.