A tooth needs a filling when it has decay, is broken or the current filling is failing because it has cracked or the tooth has developed decay around it.

Dental decay occurs when acid produced by certain types of bacteria destroy the enamel and the dentine. If left untreated it will get worse and can extend to the nerve, thus needing complicated treatment like root canal treatment or extraction. That’s why regular dental check-ups are very important in order to detect decay at an early stage and be treated easily. Dental decay extending only to the dentine can be treated with restorations/fillings.

Tooth coloured direct fillings are called Composite resin restorations and are completed at the same appointment.
Tooth coloured indirect restorations are porcelain crowns, onlays or inlays. These require laboratory work.

ADVANTAGES OF TOOTH COLOURED FILLINGS

  • The advantage of using a tooth coloured filling is that it can be colour matched to the natural teeth.
  • It can be used for front or back teeth.
  • The resin material is micromechanically bonded [glued] to the tooth.
  • It can be done in a single visit.
  • The filling is hardened immediately with a special high intensity light.
  • Lasts up to 7-10 years.

DISADVANTAGES

  • It is not the recommended restoration if moisture control is inadequate.
  • If the cavity is very large, sometimes better options can be indirect restorations like crowns or onlays.
  • less durable than amalgam fillings.

PROCEDURE:

  1. Isolation of the tooth, removal of the decay
  2. Etching of the cavity
  3. Application of adhesive layer
  4. Composite resin is applied in multiple layers and hardened with a high intensity curing light
  5. Polishing of the filling

Dental fillings allow teeth that have been damaged to continue to function in the mouth.