Dental fillings are used to repair teeth that have become decayed or damaged. Fillings can also be recommended for minimal tooth fractures and can aid in tooth sensitivity from decay penetrating protective tooth enamel. Filling materials can range from tooth-coloured composites and porcelains to precious metals and silver-coloured, metallic amalgam.
The need for a filling and establishing an effective general dental treatment plan is often determined during a routine examination or cleaning appointment, where decay is revealed. Careful inspection of the teeth, combined with dental x-rays, can help detect the need for a filling.
Details will be provided in the form of a written treatment plan.
Your treatment plan consultation is intended to be a relaxed, informative opportunity to discuss any questions you may have regarding your treatment plan.
Decay – Occlusal
Teeth have a hard enamel surface. But poor oral hygiene can lead to a build-up of plaque which can lead to decay. If decay is left untreated the nerve of the tooth may become infected and die. This may cause an abscess.
Patients often ask: “Will I feel any discomfort or pain during the treatment?” Your comfort throughout any treatment procedure is of paramount importance to us and before any filling treatment is commenced, your dentist will ensure that you are fully numbed. Should anything be uncomfortable to you, we will encourage you to use a “stop” signal by simply raising your hand – you are always in control. Where suitable, we use topical anaesthetics which numb the gum prior to delivering our local anaesthetic.
Amalgam to composite
Amalgam fillings in the lower jaw can often be seen when we talk or laugh. But amalgam fillings can also sometimes be seen in the upper jaw. These can be unsightly and can also discolour the tooth. Composite (White) fillings are available to improve this.
Your filling treatment can include the following basic steps:
Premium filling materials are utilised in every recommended filling treatment.
The recommended filling material will depend upon the type and extent of the damage to your tooth. Common filling materials are:
Composite Resin Fillings
Desirable for their aesthetics, treatment versatility, and their ability to provide direct support to weakened teeth. Composite Resin fillings can be colour-matched to your existing teeth, can be used to repair chipped, broken or worn teeth as well as areas of decay, and since they chemically bond to the tooth structure, can immediately strengthen the affected tooth.
Amalgam (silver) Fillings
Long lasting and budget-friendly, amalgam fillings consist of blended metals that allow fillings to last an average of 12 years and normally carry a lower treatment cost.
RMGI or Resin Modified Glass Ionomer Fillings
Therapeutic fluoride release, easily tolerated treatment technique, and short chair time make the RMGI filling a highly recommended choice for children and the elderly. Preparation and placement of RMGI fillings is well tolerated by children due to the short treatment time frame and a lessened need for local anaesthetic. RMGI fillings are also tooth coloured.
These fillings are made of porcelain and are very aesthetic alternatives to composite fillings. Also referred to as onlays, these fillings can protect and restore large portions of decayed, heavily restored teeth. Porcelain inlays and onlays are made from strong material (the same as that used in crowns). The material is tooth coloured and customised to a natural tooth shade.
BDS (Hons.) MJDF RCS (Eng), MClinDent (FRP Lond) FICOI, MSc (Dental Implantology)
BDS (Lond) MJDF RCS (Eng)