Composite fillings – often referred to as tooth-colored fillings – are dental restorations that have been developed to mimic the natural color and appearance of your teeth. They come in various shades of white and can be made to blend in with or even improve the appearance of your smile. Composite fillings are a combination of ceramic and plastic compounds that are chemically bonded to the teeth. They can be used in all areas of the mouth and in many cases, are all that is needed to restore your decayed, chipped, or broken tooth. When a composite filling is not enough to restore a broken tooth, it is often still used in combination with other restorative methods to strengthen and beautify the tooth.
Did you know…
That composite fillings allow us to preserve more of your natural tooth structure? Because composite is chemically bonded to the surface of the tooth like an adhesive, we can avoid cutting deeper into the tooth for retention. There are a few more steps to placing a composite filling and it can take just a little more time than traditional amalgam fillings, but we can preserve more of your natural tooth and create a restoration that is both more esthetic and less invasive.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you have a cavity, broken tooth, or a deteriorated filling, you may be a candidate for a tooth-colored filling. Schedule a dental consultation to find out if composites are right for you.
If necessary, your gums and teeth will be anesthetized with a local anesthetic around the site of the restoration. We will remove any decay or old filling material to prepare the tooth for your new tooth-colored filling. The composite resin will be placed into the tooth and fully cured with a special hand-held light for less than a minute. The new filling will then be shaped to match your tooth and polished for a smooth comfortable feel.
By the time you leave our office, your composite filling is fully cured and ready for use. You should be able to return to normal activity and oral care immediately after your visit. As with any type of dental treatment, a small percentage of patients will experience post appointment sensitivity and mild tenderness in the area. This usually resolves within a couple of days to a couple of weeks. If you experience sensitivity lasting more than a week, please give us a call.