About Tooth Colored Restoration
Composite resins, or tooth-colored fillings, provide good durability and resistance to fracture in small to medium size fillings that must withstand moderate pressure from the stress of chewing. They can be used on either front or back teeth. They are a good choice for patients that prefer that their fillings look more natural.
Composites cost more than amalgam fillings (silver-colored fillings) and occasionally are not covered by insurance plans. Amalgam fillings are stronger than composites, but require more healthy tooth to be removed. However, no dental filling lasts forever.
It generally takes longer to place a composite filling than it does for an amalgam filling. That’s because composite fillings require the tooth be kept clean and dry while the cavity is being filled. Tooth-colored fillings are now used more often than amalgam or gold fillings, probably due to cosmetics.
No filling is as strong as natural tooth so it is best to prevent tooth decay. You can dramatically decrease your risk of cavities and other dental diseases by:
- brushing your teeth twice a day with toothpaste that contains fluoride
- flossing daily
- eating a balanced diet
- visiting the dentist regularly
Dr. Knox usually recommends composite resins for restorations. However, there are situations where she feels that an amalgam filling (silver-colored) would be best. This usually happens when the cavity in on part of a tooth that would be very difficult to keep clean and dry during the procedure, such as below the gum line.