Composite fillings otherwise known as white fillings are a type of dental restoration designed specifically to blend in seamlessly with a patient’s remaining teeth. While amalgam fillings are darker and can easily by seen by others, composite tooth-colored fillings are more discreet. Similarly to amalgams, white fillings can be used to repair chipped, fractured, or broken teeth as well as filling in tooth cavities. They’re ideal for treating teeth at the front of the mouth that can be see when the patient smiles. However here at Chesterfield dentistry, Dr Akinwande and the team can also replace any existing amalgam fillings a patient might have with white filings to create an all-round better smile.
Aside from the discretion factor, the advantage of composite fillings is that they allow the dentist to preserve more of the natural tooth structure. This is because the composite material chemically bonds to the surface of the tooth like an adhesive. As such they can also be used in a cosmetic setting to re-shape disfigured teeth. A disadvantages is that they cost more than amalgam fillings, but in a society focused on a whiter brighter smile, they can make a real difference.
Am I a good candidate for composite fillings?
If you have a cavity, broken, or fractured tooth, or would like to replace any unsightly amalgam filings then speak to Dr Akinwande and the team about the possibility of composite tooth-colored fillings.
How does the process work?
The process is very similar to that of amalgam fillings, but it generally takes longer. This is because unlike amalgam fillings which respond better to moisture, composites need the area to be free from saliva. In addition, where amalgam fillings harden naturally within about 1 hour, white fillings need the help of a light which cures or hardens the area. An advantage is that they harden immediately, but a disadvantage is that it’s another step in the process which takes slightly more time. Once hardened white fillings can then be buffed and polished to blend in naturally to create a natural look.
What about post treatment?
Similarly to amalgam fillings patients may feel a slight numbing sensation in the gum while any remaining anesthetic wears off. You may also experience some slight sensitivity, especially during cold days following treatment but this should go away with a week or so. However generally, patients can return to normal daily activity and oral care immediately after treatment.
If you’d like to find out whether tooth-colored composite fillings are right for you, then schedule a consultation with Dr Akinwande. To book an appointment call us on (314) 469 6429 today.