A dental filling is the material or materials used in restoring a tooth’s outer surface. The need for this procedure could be due to damage from decay, trauma or wearing down of the teeth. This is one of the most common dental procedures that dentists perform each day.
Procedure: After Dr. Ilawan has numbed the area of the mouth around the tooth that needs the filling, he uses special tools to remove all decay that is on the surface of the tooth and thoroughly cleans the area. This leaves a hole that will then be filled with any one of the following materials:
- Gold- This is one of the best materials that gum tissue will tolerate and can last 20 years or more. Gold is the most expensive choice and can take several dental visits to complete.
- Silver (amalgam) – This is one of the lease expensive materials and is resistant to wear. It is an alloy of mercury, silver, tin, copper and zinc. It is dark in color and not used on the front teeth.
- Composite or Resin – This is used when you want your filling to match the color of your tooth. Unfortunately these can chip and stain and usually last for 3 to 10 years.
- Cerec® inlay or onlay – This porcelain filling is the same color as your natural tooth and made in the office while you wait. It is then bonded to your tooth. The fee for this filling is about the same as a gold filling.