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What Materials are Used to Fill Cavities?

What Materials are Used to Fill Cavities?

Tooth decay is a major cause of tooth loss and remains a public health concern, despite advances in dental hygiene. Visiting your dentist for twice yearly checkups plays a key role in detecting issues such as tooth decay during the early stages before it advances. Dental fillings are effective at treating mild-to-moderate dental decay and restoring your smile.

At Brite Dental Spa in New York City, Eric Halejian, DDS, provides comprehensive dental care to keep your smile healthy and bright. Dr. Halejian routinely performs fillings to treat cavities. When it’s time to choose a material for your filling, Dr. Halejian will help you decide which material is best suited for you. Keep reading to learn more about different types of dental filling materials.

Types of dental fillings

When you need a dental filling, you can choose from a variety of materials to fill the cavity. Dr. Halejian will discuss your options after completing a dental exam.

The best material depends on the location of your tooth and the severity of the tooth decay. For example, materials that match the color of enamel are often a good choice for teeth that are prominent in your smile. Dr. Halejian aims to restore both the function and the appearance of your teeth, while also being conscious of affordability.

Gold fillings

Gold fillings are durable and non-corrosive. This long-lasting material can last an average of 15 years. They’re biocompatible with your gums and they won’t damage opposing teeth. Additionally, less tooth reduction is required when using fillings made of gold. 

Silver amalgam fillings

Silver fillings are strong and less likely to break compared to other types of fillings. They’re one of the most affordable types of filling material available, and are useful for larger tooth fillings.  

Composite resin fillings

Composite resin closely matches the color of your natural tooth, allowing it to blend in seamlessly. This makes it an ideal option when you want a cosmetically appealing dental filling option. Composite resin fillings are made of quartz in resin or glass and last for about five to seven years. 

Ceramic fillings

Ceramic fillings are made of porcelain, and like resin composite fillings they’re designed to match the exact color of your natural teeth. After the treated tooth is sealed with ceramic material, the result is an aesthetically pleasing dental restoration that doesn’t stand out visually like silver and gold material.

Ceramic is also strong and durable, making it an ideal option for teeth under greater biting pressure. With proper care, ceramic fillings can last 15 years or longer.

Glass isomer fillings

Just like adults, children are vulnerable to getting cavities. Sometimes even baby teeth develop cavities. Glass isomer can be used to fill in small areas of decay, making it an excellent choice for children. This type of filling requires replacement within five years, which isn’t a problem for childhood teeth that are still developing. 

Caring for your teeth

In addition to practicing good oral hygiene, scheduling, and attending twice yearly dental visits is a big part of keeping your teeth healthy. Your dentist is trained to detect potential problems before their start, or at their earliest stages when they’re easier to treat. After your dental filling, it’s wise to discuss how to best maintain your oral health and prevent future cavities.

From simple cleanings to implants, Dr. Halejian can help the entire family keep their smiles sparkling. To get started, call our office at Brite Dental Spa and speak with one of our helpful team members, or book online to schedule an appointment with Dr. Halejian. Additionally, we are now accepting teledentistry appointments.

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