A Comprehensive Guide to Dental Fillings: Materials, Types, and Aftercare

What Are Dental Fillings?

Dental fillings are a commonly used treatment that many people will need at some point in their lives. They’re used to fill cavities and other areas of tooth decay and can help prevent further damage from occurring. However, there are numerous dental filling types. That’s why Dr. Fredericks of Southern Cal smiles has created this easy-to-follow guide so you can better understand your treatment options. 

Dental Filling Materials

Several different materials are used for dental fillings, each with unique properties. The most common materials include:

  • Amalgam: A mixture of metals, including silver, mercury, and tin. Amalgam fillings have been used for over 150 years and are known for their durability and wear and tear resistance. However, they’re noticeable and can discolor over time.
  • Composite: A plastic material that’s mixed with a tooth-colored resin. Composite fillings are a popular choice as they can be matched to the color of the tooth, making them virtually invisible. However, they’re not as durable as amalgam fillings and may need to be replaced more frequently.
  • Gold: Gold fillings are made from a mixture of gold and other metals. They’re durable and long-lasting, but also more expensive than other fillings.
  • Ceramic: These fillings are made from a type of ceramic material and are matched to the tooth color. They’re durable and long-lasting but can be more expensive than composite fillings.

Types of Dental Fillings

There are several different types of dental fillings, and those include:

  • Direct fillings: These are fillings that are placed directly into the tooth. They can be used for small to moderate-sized cavities and are the most common type of filling.
  • Indirect fillings: These are created outside the mouth and then bonded or cemented into place. They’re used for larger cavities or cosmetic issues and include inlays and onlays.
  • Inlays: Inlays are similar to direct fillings but are created outside of the mouth and then bonded or cemented into place. They can be used for larger cavities or cosmetic purposes.
  • Onlays: Onlays are similar to inlays, but they cover the entire chewing surface of the tooth. They’re used for larger cavities or cosmetic issues.
tooth-colored fillings

Post-Operative Care

After receiving a dental filling, it’s crucial to take care of your teeth so the filling lasts as long as possible. To properly care for your dental filling, do the following:

  • Brush and floss your teeth regularly, at least twice a day.
  • Avoid chewing on hard or sticky foods for at least 24 hours after the filling is placed.
  • Visit your dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings.
  • If you experience any pain or sensitivity, contact your dentist immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Fillings

Eliminate Tooth Decay With Dental Fillings

Don’t let tooth decay and cavities ruin your smile! At Dr. Fredericks’ dental office in Woodland Hills, CA, we offer top-notch dental filling services to restore your teeth to their optimal health and appearance. With our state-of-the-art technology and experienced team, you can trust that your filling will be done quickly and painlessly. Plus, with regular check-ups and maintenance, you can ensure that your filling lasts for years to come. 

Don’t wait any longer to take care of your teeth — schedule your appointment with Dr. Fredericks today and get the smile you deserve!