A filling is a great way to make a damaged tooth look and function as it did before it was damaged. Your dentist will remove the damaged part of the tooth, cleans it, and fills it in with one of the possible filling materials. Not only does filling it in restore the tooth but it prevents decay by plugging the space where bacteria can get in.
What Types of Tooth Fillings Are There?
- Gold Fillings: These fillings are made in a lab and are later cemented into the tooth. To get this type is the most expensive and takes multiple visits but are considered the most effective option by many dentists.
- Amalgam Fillings: Amalgam fillings are silver, and are also very effective. They are not as expensive as gold fillings but they are very visible. This means that they are not often used on front teeth.
- Porcelain Fillings: These fillings can be inlays or onlays and are similarly priced to gold filings. They can match the color of your teeth and are stain resistant. They generally cover most of your tooth.
- Composite Fillings: Composite fillings are made of resin. They can be matched to the color of your teeth, and they are mixed and put directly into the cavity. These may wear and chip over time.
Are There Any Risks?
There are two main risks to getting fillings: infection and damage. Sometimes when you get a filling, it can pull away from the tooth which leaves a small space open. This space is an area where bacteria can get in and cause more tooth decay and infection. Cavity fillings can also break or fall out completely. The fillings can become damaged from things like being hit in the mouth or even just biting on something hard. These can both cause mouth issues and should be treated as soon as it is noticed.