We all know when we are treated to the sight of someone yawning what their dental history has been. When we see rows of dark metal fillings lining up along their jawbones, we can imagine a childhood filled with sweet treats and maybe a few tussles with the parents and the toothbrushing.
Our childhood fillings have been with us a long time, especially if we are children of the 70s, 80s or 90s. Sometimes it can seem like we can never forget that we should have done what our parents said, and now we have to pay the price every time we laugh or yawn. But we don’t.
Here at Leamington Spa Dental Practice in Leamington Spa, we can replace amalgam fillings with fillings made of tooth-coloured composite. This is a mixture of glass and plastic. It comes as a resin that we put into the cavity in layers, and then harden each layer with a UV light before doing the next.
What’s so great about white fillings?
OK, so white fillings look fantastic, but is there anything else to recommend them over amalgam? You bet there is.
Strength and durability
Over the few decades that white fillings have been available, dental researchers have been working to make them stronger. Fillings, especially ones at the sides and back of the mouth, take quite a lot of punishment with all that chewing and maybe even night-time tooth grinding, so they have to be resilient. They weren’t so long-lasting when they first became available, but now, it’s safe to say that white fillings are stronger and more durable than amalgam.
Get your chewing surfaces back
Run your tongue over your amalgam-filled back teeth and you will feel the tooth round the sides of a flat centre of amalgam. That’s because amalgam is a soft mixture that gets packed into the tooth cavity. We can pack the cavity tightly but we can’t recreate the lost parts of your tooth. We can with composite resin though. Once it has set hard, we can use tools to sculpt it to recreate the mounds and valleys of your lost chewing surfaces.
Why not come in and get your amalgam fillings replaced with white fillings?
White fillings are widely used in cosmetic dentistry to restore the form and function of decayed, chipped or cracked teeth. They are made of composite materials which offer strength and function at the same time.
At Leamington Spa Dental Practice, white fillings are our method of choice when it comes to tooth decay restoration. Unlike metal fillings that simply fill in the decay, white fillings frame the affected tooth and enable it to withstand the forces of biting and chewing.
What should I expect?
Shortly before the treatment begins, your dentist will numb the affected tooth and the surrounding area in your mouth with a local anaesthetic. This way, you will feel no pain or discomfort during the procedure. Once the anaesthesia has settled in, the dentist will use a dental drill to remove all of the damaged and decayed parts of the tooth. They will then clean the tooth thoroughly.
After removing the decayed tooth portions, the white filling will be placed in layers to fill out the holes. Each layer will be hardened will a special light, to make sure that the material sets properly.
Who can have white fillings?
If you want to restore a decayed or damaged tooth and you do not want to use metal fillings, white fillings can provide you with an effective dental restoration, which looks and feels very natural. You will not have to worry about dark-coloured spots in your mouth, as the composite blends in with the rest of your teeth for a natural appearance.
Benefits of white fillings
Overall, white fillings are more natural-looking compared to metal fillings and can be colour-adjusted to fit the shade of your natural teeth. Moreover, white fillings require less preparation than metal fillings and less of the healthy tooth enamel will be removed during this process. Last but not least, white fillings are not as sensitive to extreme temperatures and do not shrink or expand because of temperature changes.
If you want to learn more about white fillings and their benefits, please contact us today and we will book a consultation appointment for you.
Your teeth are a vital part of your life. They allow you to choose from the incredible range of foods in the world. They are instrumental in speaking clearly. They also form a central part of your look – your smile. With all that in mind, it’s worth looking after them so that they can continue to serve you for years to come.
All that being said, the world takes its toll on our bodies. Even if you have a good dental hygiene routine, it’s possible that one or two holes have started to appear in your teeth. Dental decay can be exacerbated by certain foods and drinks, lifestyle choices and problems with the alignment of your teeth. When you visit us at Leamington Spa Dental Practice, we will do an examination of your mouth to check whether your teeth need any attention.
Fillings in Leamington Spa – the basics
If you visit your dentist regularly, they can check for signs of cavities. Caught early enough, they may be able to be repaired without fillings.
If you do need a filling, the more you know about the process, the better prepared you will be. Fillings are one of the most basic dental treatments. They have been around for a long time.
In order to fit a filling, your dentist will drill away the area where you have decay. A filler material is then added to the appropriate spot to plug the hole and protect the tooth. This substance hardens quickly and becomes durable enough to withstand the rigours of everyday use.
You will have a choice when it comes to the filler material that is used for any fillings you need. Traditionally, a silver-coloured material, composed of mercury and other metals, are used. These are still common today and usually available on the NHS. They are called amalgam fillings. They are hard wearing but visible in the mouth. Some patients do not like these fillings being obvious when you open your mouth.
White fillings are also available. They are designed to blend in with your teeth and so they are actually more tooth-coloured. It used to be that white fillings were not quite as durable as amalgam fillings but there are materials available now that give comparable longevity. Many patients now choose white fillings as a more aesthetically pleasing solution.