Your smile is an important asset for your diet and your social life, so you probably want to keep it looking and functioning at its best. For a long time, amalgam fillings were the only way to repair cavities, but they can be more visible than some patients would like. Today, tooth-colored alternatives are available, and they have more advantages than just being pretty. Read on to learn about how tooth-colored fillings can be the best solution for your cavity.
Why Are Fillings Necessary?
Cavities are bacterial infections in your tooth’s enamel, and they do not heal on their own. Left untreated, a cavity will bore deeper into the tooth until it infects the pulp inside, resulting in toothache. If allowed to progress further, it can cause tooth loss or even potentially fatal secondary infections. For centuries, filling have served patients by preventing this from happening.
How Do Fillings Work?
To fix cavities, dentists remove the infected part and fill it in with a durable material to restore both strength and structure to the tooth. Filling material is traditionally a dark-colored combination of metals called amalgam, but recent developments have made tooth-colored fillings that perfectly match the surrounding teeth possible. This allows a patient to smile without worrying about anyone noticing their fillings
What Makes Tooth-Colored Fillings Better?
While amalgam fillings have served patients well for generations, they can be more visible than would be desirable because of their dark grey color. Tooth-colored fillings are made from composite resin, a blend of plastic and tiny glass particles. These fillings can perfectly match the color, luster, and shape of natural enamel. They also bond more securely with the tooth, resulting in a stronger restoration.
While tooth-colored fillings are the more aesthetically pleasing option, they are also more expensive and slightly less durable. However, the lifespan of any filling mostly depends on how well the patient takes care of it. A tooth-colored filling can be expected to last seven to ten years with proper care. A filling made from amalgam can last between seven and twenty years with similarly good maintenance.
Tooth-colored fillings provide a reliable and nearly invisible restoration for a tooth with a cavity. After a brief consultation, your dentist can help you determine if one would be a good solution for preserving your smile.
About the Practice
Indianapolis Family Dentistry provides trusted dental care to patients in Indianapolis, IN. Led by Drs. Mark M. Farthing and Armin M. Tepner, the dedicated staff delivers high-quality dental care using the latest technology in a welcoming environment. The practice offers preventative, restorative, cosmetic, pediatric, and emergency dentistry. If you’re curious about receiving a tooth-colored filling, contact the office online or dial (317) 898-3384.