If a single spot on one of your teeth is not cleaned daily, the
remaining bacteria will transform themselves into a sticky
film substance called plaque. The plaque will produce
acids which eat away at the enamel of the tooth and will
eventually cause cavities. When the cavity gets through the
enamel, into the underlying tooth structure (the dentin),
repair or restoration is necessary.
If there is sufficient tooth structure remaining after removal of all
the caries, a filling is placed. There are three types of fillings commonly used:
Composite fillings are the newest type
of filling in common usage. They are commonly known as white
fillings. They are a porcelain/plastic hybrid that is bonded
directly to the cavity preparation. Composite fillings were
created as an alternative to traditional metal dental
fillings. They are colored to look like natural teeth and
are more esthetically pleasing than amalgam or gold
fillings. They are also strong, durable, and make for a very
natural looking smile.
will give you a local anesthetic to numb the area before
preparing an access to the decayed area of the tooth and
removing the decayed portions. Traditional drills, micro air
abrasion or even with a dental laser can be used to
dental material is then used to open up the pores of your
tooth's dentin and roughens up the surface of the exposed
enamel. This creates a stronger bond between the tooth and
the filling. The bond resin is applied to stick the
composite to your tooth. This material is made of the same
dental resin as the composite however it is much more fluid.
composite filling, your dentist will be able to preserve
more of the natural tooth as the composite resin can be
bonded to the tooth in thin layers and slowly built up to
form a complete filling. A bright dental light will harden
each layer before the next is applied.
decayed area of your tooth is close to a nerve, a special
liner can be used to protect the nerve. A special dental
material is then used to open up the pores of your tooth's
dentin and roughens up the surface of the exposed enamel.
This creates a stronger bond between the tooth and the
filling. The bond resin is applied to stick the composite to
your tooth. This material is made of the same dental resin
as the composite however it is much more fluid. This layer
is then hardened by the bright light in the same way as the
filling is completed, your dentist will use a special
articulating paper, to adjust the height of your dental
filling and to ensure that your bite remains correct. Your
tooth is then polished.
If such a
filling is not going to be enough to protect your damaged
tooth, or if your tooth enamel is thin and will easily
fracture, or if your tooth has had a root canal that
weakened your tooth condition, your tooth may require
additional protection such as a crown.
|Gold Fillings / Gold inlay
Gold fillings are widely viewed of restorations.
From a bio-mechanical perspective, they are the ideal material as they will not
tarnish or corrode and they wear at the same rate as tooth enamel.
The placement of a gold filling requires two separate appointments
with your dentist. At the first visit, the cavity is removed and the tooth is prepared.
An impression is taken of the tooth preparation and a temporary restoration is placed.
A custom made filling is made from the impression. At the second visit the temporary
restoration is removed and the gold filling is placed.
A cast gold filling is made in a dental lab and sent back to your dentist,
who cements it in place in your mouth. You will need at least two visits
to the dentist to get the job done.
- Gold fillings is stronger than amalgam fillings.
- Gold fillings last a long time.
- Gold fillings costs more than other kinds of fillings.
- Gold fillings and crowns are indirect fillings, so they require at least two appointments.
- The gold colour may not appeal to people who want a "natural" look.
|Amalgam (silver) Fillings
fillings have been used for decades and they remain one of
the most commonly used filling materials. They are often
referred to as metal fillings. Amalgam is a mixture of
silver and other metals, such as copper, tin and zinc,
grounded into powdered form. The silver powder is mixed with
mercury and placed into the cavity preparation where it is
shaped before hardening.
In recent years, the safety of amalgam fillings has come under
scrutiny because of the mercury it contains. The absorption
of elemental mercury is known to be a contributing factor to
several diseases, including Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis,
dementia and arthritis. However, recent studies have proved
amalgam fillings to be perfectly safe. It is true, that
mercury vapor is toxic but mercury molecules in hardened
amalgam are bound to the silver molecules rendering the
level of toxicity harmless. The American Dental Association
and the Food and Drug Administration have researched the
safety of amalgam fillings and have found them to be not
only safe but extremely effective..