Are Dental Fillings?
Dental fillings are mixtures of metal used to fill a cavity. The most common types
of dental fillings are:
- A self-hardening
mixture of silver-tin-copper alloy powder and liquid mercury.
is often used as a filling material and replacement for broken teeth.
durable, long lasting, holds up to the force of biting, usually completed in one
visit, resists leakage, inexpensive.
may stain teeth over time, may make tooth more sensitive to hot and cold.
referred to as a silver filling.
- A mixture
of powdered glass and plastic resin.
durable, resists breaking, does not corrode, small amount of leaking, holds up
well to forces of biting.
cost more than dental amalgam, material shrinks when hardened, may leak over time.
referred to as a white, plastic or tooth-colored filling.
self-hardening mixture of glass and inorganic acid.
used for small fillings, crowns, liners and temporary restorations.
releases fluoride (may provide help against further decay), completed in one visit,
low incidence of producing tooth sensitivity, good esthetics.
Cost is similar to Composite resin, not recommended for biting surfaces and permanent
teeth, could increase chance of periodontal disease.
mixture of glass and resin polymer and organic acid that hardens with the exposure
of a blue light used in the dental office.
used for small fillings.
very good esthetics, releases fluoride (may provide help against further decay),
good for non-biting surfaces, good resistance to leakage, produces low tooth sensitivity.
may be expensive, not recommended to restore biting surfaces and permanent teeth.
material formed into fillings or crowns using models of the prepared teeth.
in inlays, veneers, crowns, and fixed bridges.
good resistance to further decay, resists leakage, does not cause tooth sensitivity.
can break under biting forces, not recommended for molars, requires at least 2
or cobalt-chrome alloys
of nickel and chromium.
for crowns, fixed bridges, and partial denture frameworks.
good resistance to further decay, does not corrode in mouth, resists leakage.
conducts heat and cold, may irritate sensitive teeth, high cost, may cause wear
to opposing teeth.
fused to metal
material that is enameled on the top of metal shells.
for crowns and fixed bridges.
resistance to further decay, very durable, does not cause tooth sensitivity, resists
high costs, requires at least 2 office visits.
mixture of gold, copper, and other metals.
for crowns and fixed bridges.
very durable, good resistance to further decay, resists leakage, does not corrode
is not tooth-colored, may cause tooth sensitivity, high cost, requires at least
2 office visits.
having a cavity filled, you should talk with your dentist about the different
materials used to fill cavities and determine which material is best for you.
of teeth with cavities are also called tooth restorations.
Effects of fillings
components used in dental fillings may have side effects or cause allergic reactions.
However, the risk of having a side effect or allergic reaction is very low for
all types of filling materials.
side effects or allergic reactions do occur, the most common symptom is a skin