We provide "white" fillings for teeth. It is important to have cavities filled before they deepen and jeopardize the pulp and possibly end up in an abscess resulting in a root canal or loss of a tooth.
You can see from this picture of cavities between teeth how they can progressively deepen. Sometimes the cavities may occur in an otherwise healthy tooth without any symptoms and sometimes they may re- occur under an old filling that is deteriorating. If the cavity is not filled in time it may eventually lead to the involvement of the nerve in the tooth and a possible abcess.
There have been many advances in the field of restorative dentistry that deals with filling of broken and decayed teeth. There are a wide variety of materials available. The three most common ones you have heard of are “silver fillings” , "gold fillings" and “ white fillings”
SILVER FILLINGS: These fillings are not actually pure silver. They are an alloy of many metals such as Silver, Mercury, Copper etc. The amalgam is mixed and then packed into the cavity before it hardens into a strong alloy. These restorations are not esthetic since the color is a silver/gray color.
After oxidation occurs it may turn black.
GOLD FILLINGS: Gold fillings are not esthetic but can provide VERY long lasting and highly biocompatible restorations for teeth that need fillings.
WHITE FILLINGS: The term white filling is basically a misnomer. There are many different types of “white filling materials”. The materials most commonly used today are: Composite Resins, Acrylics, BIS-GMA, Glass Ionomers etc.
Porcelain and similar materials.
Composite Resins are plastic-like materials in the resin family used to fill teeth. Traditional composite resins are made up of a large amount of inorganic filler particles bound by an organic polymer matrix or mesh. The newer generation composites have superior properties that include higher strength, hardness, elasticity, abrasion resistance and high polishability to make the restoration appear lifelike. Uses include cosmetic procedures, filling cavities, correcting size, color and shapes of teeth.
They can be used in front as well as back teeth.
Porcelain can be used to fill cavities with "onlay" and "inlay" restorations that are created in our lab.They are very durable, long lasting and esthetic.
So what’s the difference?
The differences are primarily in Cost * Strength * Longevity * Esthetics
Sometimes you may need a crown to restore the tooth. Click here for more about crowns.