If you have a cavity, you will likely need a dental filling to restore your tooth. Different types of fillings can get the job done. In this post, our Orléans dentists explain why you'd need a tooth filling, and describe different types of fillings to consider. 

What are dental fillings?

These restorations are used to repair the structure, function, and appearance of a damaged or decayed tooth, thereby relieving any tooth pain you may be experiencing.

Why are dental fillings used?

Tooth fillings can be used to repair fractures, cracks, and tooth decay. They help restore the functionality of your tooth and, in some cases, can be used to improve the appearance of your smile.

What are some signs I may need a dental filling?

While you should consult with a dentist to determine whether you require a filling, here are some indicators that you may have a cavity that requires a tooth filling. If you notice any of the following symptoms, make an appointment with your dentist:

  1. You feel a sharp or throbbing pain in your tooth.
  2. When you examine your teeth, you see a hole or dark spot. 
  3. Your tooth is broken or chipped. 
  4. Your tooth feels rough to the touch. 
  5. Food keeps getting stuck between certain teeth. 
  6. An existing tooth filling has broken or cracked. 
  7. You've lost a tooth filling and need a replacement.

What are dental fillings made of?

Dental fillings can be constructed from a variety of substances, including amalgam, composite, porcelain, and gold. While each of these materials is secure and durable, they also each have benefits and drawbacks when it comes to filling cavities or treating decay. Here, our dentists offer suggestions on how to choose the best dental solution for you.

Porcelain Fillings for Strength & Appearance

Porcelain fillings are brittle, hard, and combined with metal; they are also known as inlays and onlays. These strong, tooth-coloured dental restorations are created in a dental lab and then sent back to your dentist for placement. Because they are stronger and longer-lasting than a typical dental filling, molars are frequently the site of their use.

You’ll usually need to attend two dental appointments so your porcelain filling can be placed in your mouth.

Composite Fillings for a Natural Look & Feel

Because they are very similar in colour to natural teeth, composite fillings tend to blend in well with the surrounding teeth.

They look and feel natural, and are popular with patients who are concerned with how amalgam (grey) fillings may appear on teeth that are visible when they smile.

Composites are popular among dentists because they bond to teeth naturally and are simple to sculpt and shape onto teeth. As a result, less existing enamel will need to be removed from the tooth when it is being prepared by your dentist.

Your dentist will remove tooth decay and add bonding material to the inside of the hole so the filling can be placed. Composite resin is then layered in the hole.

A curing light is used to harden each layer. When the last layer of resin has hardened, the filling will be carefully shaped to match your natural teeth.

Gold Fillings for Durability 

Cast gold fillings are made using a model of your tooth. Created from a mix of gold combined with other materials such as copper and silver, a cast gold filling is created in a dental lab and sent back to your dentist.

It will then be firmly fixed inside your mouth. Though this type of filling is the most durable (lasting 20 years or more), it is also the most expensive. It will also necessitate at least two dental appointments to be placed.

To learn more about which dental fillings are available at St. Joseph Orléans to schedule an appointment, contact our Orléans dentists today.

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At St. Joseph Orleans Dental Centre, we're always happy to accept new patients into our dental family. Contact us to get started today. 

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