Unlike the older generations of the 1900s, dentists and dental patients now have options when it comes to selecting materials to fill cavities. Until recently, the only choice for a filling was the traditional metal amalgam which leaves an obvious silver spot in the tooth. While these silver fillings have been successful at filling cavities and preventing further tooth decay, many people today are much more concerned with the aesthetic appearance of their teeth than they were just 15 years ago. The popular choice among patients today is a resin based composite filling that is designed to match the natural color of the teeth.
Resin composite fillings are made of ceramic and plastic, and they mimc the appearance of natural teeth. These tooth colored fillings are ideal for the teeth that are fully visible when smiling and where their cosmetic benefit is critical. Resin composite fillings have not been widely used on the back molars up until recently because of the fact that resin fillings have not held up from heavy wear. The molars take a lot of pressure from daily eating and normal use of the mouth. Resin fillings are becoming stronger and more durable and dentists are now offering them as a choice for their patients who need to have cavities filled.
If you need to have a cavity filled, talk with your dentists about the options available to fill your tooth. Your dentist will be the best to decide based on the position in the mouth where the cavity is located, how visible the cavity will be, and how much wear and tear it will be able to withstand. If your concern is how the filling will appear in your mouth, a resin composite filling may be an option for you.
Posted on behalf of Linda King DDS
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