A filling is a way to restore a tooth damaged by decay back to its normal function and shape. When a dentist gives you a filling, he or she first removes the decayed tooth material, cleans the affected area, and then fills the cleaned out cavity with a filling material.
By closing off spaces where bacteria can enter, a filling also helps prevent further decay. Materials used for fillings include gold, porcelain, composite resins, amalgam and ceramic restorations.
Different materials are used for different teeth, and options for the same tooth depending on the place and need.
Composite fillings are the most widely used, because of their excellent appearance and are bonded to the tooth. A range of shades are available so that the colour of your teeth can be matched very closely making them almost impossible to see. Most suitable for small to medium sized cavities.
Glass Ionomer fillings are another high quality tooth coloured material especially suitable for areas where strength is less important such as the gum line, children’s molars or in small sized cavities.
Amalgam Fillings is the most time tested and cost effective material for fillings in the back teeth. Disadvantages are their metal appearance and lack of bonding to the tooth. Nowadays people seldom choose this material due to controversies over the mercury content, however this material is supported by New Zealand Dental Association and other similar associations worldwide as a safe material to use.
Ceramic Inlay/Onlay there is a wide range of materials classified generally under ceramic indirect restorations, which are all tooth coloured, it requires 2 visits to place first visit our well trained dentist will remove the old broken filling/ cracked cusps and prepare the tooth according to the specific guidelines of the type of ceramic material chosen. As the materials are a lot stronger, it is the most suitable solution for when high stressing bearing area with large amount of tooth lost and is excellent when aesthetics or longevity is important. The dentist will assess the tooth and the overall bite and advise which type of ceramic would be best suited for your tooth.