Composite or “White” Fillings

More recently, I’ve had patients asking questions about their fillings such as “what kind of filling am I getting?”, and “what is my filling made of?” and “how does it work?” I love when patients ask dental questions and I would imagine many people may be curious to know the answers.

At Crossroads Dental Arts, we place composite restorations. We are an amalgam free practice. Composite restorations or “white fillings” are used to fill decayed teeth and bond teeth for esthetic improvements. They are composed of a mixture of glass and plastic. This mixture of polymers is also referred to as resin. Many people prefer resins because they are tooth colored. We are able to match the shade of your tooth with the shade of composite for a natural looking blend. Additionally, many patients want to avoid the mercury from metal fillings, known as amalgams. Another advantage of composite over metal fillings is that they can bond to the tooth. This allows for a more conservative tooth preparation-less cutting of healthy tooth!

How does it work? After choosing the matching shade, the composite is bonded to the tooth and hardened with a blue light. It is added to the cavity preparation in layers, then shaped and polished. Composite resins are strong enough to withstand chewing forces in the back teeth. They generally last 10 years or more. Longevity depends on several factors including the patient’s homecare and diet, the dentist’s placement and choice of materials, and the patient’s caries risk (risk for decay).

At our practice, we choose the best quality dental materials and use modern technology including a special composite delivery system that is sonically activated. The SonicFill applies a specific amplitude and frequency of sonic energy to the composite material to achieve outstanding adaptation during filling placement.

Hopefully this sheds a little more light on the filling process. Please feel free to ask any and all questions you may have regarding any treatment options. We appreciate all of our patients and your trust in us! See you at your next visit!