White Tooth Colored Fillings
One option to improve the cosmetic look of your smile is to have your metal-coloured fillings replaced with tooth-coloured or `white` fillings. This is a safe procedure that entails one of our dentists removing any decay from your tooth, taking out the metal or amalgam filling and placing a tooth coloured filling instead. Composite fillings – also known as tooth-colored fillings – are dental restorations designed to be inconspicuous and natural in appearance. They blend well with the teeth and appear more natural than amalgam fillings, which are darker and more easily seen by other people. The new filling is made from a very hard substance and will withstand the forces in your mouth when you bite and chew over a long period of time.
This will allow you to smile without a metallic glint in sight, giving your teeth a more natural appearance overall. As dentists we believe prevention is always better than cure and will always encourage and help you to look after your teeth so you don`t develop tooth decay in the first place. If you do have decay and need a filling then we recommend white fillings as a good solution that is both aesthetic and functional.
- The patient is anesthetized using local anesthesia such as Carbocaine for short procedures, Lidocaine for medium length sessions, and Marcaine for multiple fillings. Patients with feelings of anxiety may be offered Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas) for the duration of the treatment. Only in extreme cases, the patient is given IV sedation or general anesthesia and may be referred to a more suitable dental setting such as a hospital.
- The area to be treated is secured by latex sheet that protects the tooth and keeps it dry during the procedure. It also prevents the debris from entering the oral region keeping the patient comfortable. For multiple fillings, when the treatment may require extended period of time, a bite block is used to help the patient keep their mouth open in a relaxed position without any strain on the jaw muscles.
- In case of composite fillings, the shade is chosen to closely mimic the appearance of the surrounding dentition.
- The decay is removed using a high-speed handpiece, slow-speed handpiece, laser or the combination of all three devices. The prepared surface may be etched with an appropriate solution to remove any remaining bacteria and create a porous layer for adhesive purposes. Amalgam or resin material is placed in small increments using hand instruments. The biting surface is then checked and adjusted as necessary.
Tooth Colored Filling FAQs
Composite fillings – also known as tooth-colored fillings – are dental restorations designed to be inconspicuous and natural in appearance. They blend well with the teeth and appear more natural than amalgam fillings, which are darker and more easily seen by other people. The new filling is made from a very hard substance and will withstand the forces in your mouth when you bite and chew over a long period of time.
If the cavity isn’t repaired, this cavity will continue to expand—eventually entering into your nerve canal. This can be excruciatingly painful. However, it can also lead to dire problems such as abscess or infection. Replacing old fillings or fixing chipped teeth can also be required. The most important reason to fix your cavity early on is to avoid a painful and costly root canal.
If you have a cavity, broken tooth, or a deteriorated filling, you may be a candidate for a tooth-colored filling. Schedule a dental consultation to find out if composites are right for you.
During your visit, your gums and teeth will be anesthetized with a local anesthetic near the site of the filling. Once the area is numb, the decayed or damaged portion of your teeth will be removed to make room for the new tooth-colored filling. A resin will be placed over the area and cured with a hand-held light for less than a minute. The new filling will then be shaped and polished before the procedure is complete.
Composite fillings are cured with light at your dentist’s office. You should be able to return to normal activity and oral care immediately after your visit. It’s normal for treated teeth to experience some sensitivity to hot and cold in the days following treatment, but sensitivity that persists beyond a week should be reported to your dentist.