The advancements in dental technology over the years has been pretty dramatic. Materials, equipment and techniques have all tremendously improved. Fillings in particular have come an especially long way.
Traditional metal fillings are actually derived from an “amalgam” or mixture of various metals. Due to their silver coloring, they are continually visible when patients laugh or talk, making many individuals self-conscious about speaking to others or smiling in close proximity.
Composite porcelain fillings are better known as tooth-colored fillings. For a host of reasons, using naturally colored materials instead of silver has become the most popular choice of both dental patients and top quality oral care providers like Dr. Robert Harrell at Adult Dentistry of Ballantyne. It’s great to have the confidence that comes with knowing your smile will gleam with tooth-colored fillings.
How are tooth-colored fillings placed?
Prior to installing the filling, the dentist carefully and gently removes all of the decay from your tooth. Next, a bonding material is placed inside the bacteria-free hole in your tooth. Composite resin is placed in thin layers into the hole. The curing light is applied to harden the filling, which only takes seconds to complete. Once the final layer has hardened, the dentist grinds and shapes the filling so that it feels and looks completely natural.
Advantages of tooth-colored fillings
Porcelain fillings will cost significantly less than gold fillings. Since these fillings will match your natural teeth, no one will know that any form of decay has even been present. In the majority of cases, this kind of dental restoration can be completed in a single appointment.
There is also less tooth sensitivity associated with this method of treatment. Since the composite isn’t prone to expansion and contraction the way certain metals are, these fillings are much more flexible and durable. This makes them not only longer lasting but less likely to come out while you are eating, drinking or speaking. Plus, a greater chance of decay is associated with amalgam fillings due to the fact that plaque can sometimes get underneath them. Since harmful bacteria are less able to get underneath composite fillings, they are the healthier option.
Another benefit is the fact that less of your natural tooth structure is actually removed to place white fillings as opposed to dark fillings. This means your tooth is far less likely to crack due to the intense forces of your bite. In turn, there is less potential for dental emergencies. It is easy to see why natural looking fillings have become the top choice among patients and dentists alike.
A common patient concern about traditional amalgam fillings is the fact that they have typically contained trace amounts of mercury. Some worry that this toxic substance could spur headaches and other unpleasant side-effects by leaching into your system. Now that composite porcelain fillings have become much preferred, these concerns are laid to rest. Tooth-colored fillings are comprised of completely benign substances that have no impact on your health and well-being. Based on these facts, many patients are opting to have their amalgam fillings replaced with composite or porcelain.
Adult Dentistry of Ballantyne only places tooth-colored fillings. We would be happy to use this method to repair any damage you currently have, or to improve the look and performance of your already filled cavities. Call 704-541-9888 or use the contact form on this page to set your appointment with Dr. Harrell. We look forward to giving you the brilliant smile you deserve.