White fillings, also known as composite fillings, are a very good, cost-effective treatment for damaged teeth. More cosmetically pleasing than once-popular amalgam, or metal, fillings, they alao come with several other advantages.
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What are white fillings?
Composite fillings are a popular and effective treatment option for numerous dental issues, such as:
Repairing chipped, cracked or discoloured teeth
Improving the look of discoloured or oddly-shaped teeth
Replace defective or unsightly amalgam fillings
What are the benefits of white fillings?
White fillings are often used to replace old metal fillings due to their numerous advantages, which include:
Less sensitive to temperature
Ability to better restore the original strength of a tooth by bonding to the tooth, preventing long term fractures
Less tooth is removed during filling preparation compared to amalgam fillings
Aesthetic properties – mask permanent stains, close gaps and reshape teeth
White fillings are an appropriate solution for smaller areas of decay, small fractures, and minor aesthetic issues. However, they still have their limitations. For bigger areas of breakdown, high impact spots or for greater aesthetic demand, porcelain work such as a veneer or crown may be recommended. One of our terrific dentists will diagnose the issue and help you determine the best treatment option for your particular case.
Should old amalgam fillings be replaced with composite ones?
If you had fillings done years ago, then they were in all likelihood created from a metal amalgam containing mercury, tin, silver and copper. These fillings were once very popular and thought to be long-lasting and strong.
Instead of being bonded to the tooth, amalgam fillings are simply ‘packed’ into the space. This means that the force of your bite and other general tooth use can lead to cracking and splitting or fracturing of the tooth.
Due to this, and environmental concerns, composite fillings have been developed in their place. These newer white fillings are bonded to the tooth, which allows your dentist to be more conservative and remove less of the original tooth. There is less chance of tooth fractures with composite fillings, and they blend well with your tooth as well.
If you currently have old amalgam fillings, we recommend making an appointment and having them checked by one of our dentists. We’ll give them a thorough examination and see if any decay has set in underneath and ensure they’re still performing as required.
If there are cracks in the tooth, there may be no pain or discomfort until a portion of the tooth comes away completely or the tooth splits. This is why regular check-ups are recommended; a lack of pain is often not a reliable indication that all is well. If we find that a replacement filling is required, we’ll go over the option with you.
What is involved in filling a tooth?
First we numb the area so no pain or discomfort is experienced, and then we use specialised equipment to carefully remove any decay. Once we’re satisfied that all signs of decay have been removed, we clean the area of bacteria and debris.
Composite material is then placed in layers, with each layer cured by a special light. Once the layering process is complete, we shape and polish the filling so it looks no different to your natural tooth.
Once we’re finished, there will be no discernible difference between the filling and your own teeth.
Early detection is key when it comes to your teeth
By the time you’re aware of an issue, it’s often quite developed. Regular check-ups allow our dentists to unearth issues before they grow too large. Early detection can be the difference between minor dental treatments and something more invasive, like a root canal.
Teeth can decay quickly once decay has set in. As soon as you suspect an issue, make sure you book an appointment with one of our dentists. Teeth that have become significantly compromised may require additional strengthening using a porcelain crown or onlay. While these treatments are stronger and more durable than fillings, they are also more expensive.
Easy Payment Options
Did you know we have flexible payment options available? You can pay for your weekday and Saturday dental treatment with Zip, Afterpay or National Dental Plan. Dental treatments are important to your overall health, and it’s best to get that toothache sorted as soon as possible. With Zip, Afterpay and National Dental Plan, the benefits include:
At Plainland Dental, we accept all major private health funds and can facilitate on the spot claiming with HICAPS! We are also proud to be classified as Preferred Providers for several major funds, meaning our patients will usually have access to the highest rebates possible... FIND OUT MORE