Fillings are used to restore areas of your tooth affected by decay. Dr. Mansell uses composite (tooth-colored) materials to “fill in” the surface of the tooth after all decay has been removed.
Reasons for Fillings
• Restoring small to medium sized cavities
• Restoring a chipped anterior (front) tooth
What Does a Filling Involve?
First, Dr. Mansell will answer any questions you have and will apply anesthetic to the tooth requiring the filling. The decay that is present will then be thoroughly removed and the tooth will be prepared to successfully bond with the composite material.
What Are Composite Fillings?
Composite fillings are tooth-colored to blend in with the remaining natural part of the tooth. The term composite refers to the actual filling material, which is a mixture of glass or quartz filler in a resin medium.
Composite fillings provide good durability and resistance to fracture in small-to-mid size restorations that need to withstand moderate chewing pressure. With composite fillings, less tooth structure is removed when the dentist prepares the tooth, which may result in a smaller filling compared to one composed of amalgam (silver alloy).
In addition, composites are “bonded” or attached with adhesive to the tooth often allowing a more conservative repair. Composite fillings require that the tooth be kept clean and dry during the entire filling process, and they are subject to stain and discoloration over time. The life expectancy of a white filling can depend greatly on where it is in your mouth and how heavily your teeth come together when you bite.
Composite filling material is also commonly used to repair front teeth that have chipped or worn. Where possible, aesthetic bonding of composite material to front teeth is generally much less expensive than veneers or crowns. However, bonding typically does not last as long as veneers or crowns.
If your tooth is sensitive for a week or more it is important to call our office so we can examine the tooth and determine if additional treatment is needed.