Tooth-Colored Fillings

Tooth Colored Fillings

Improve your smile

Sometimes a routine filling will repair a damaged tooth, but may negatively affect your smile. The standard fillings for the last few decades have been silver or metal. Over time the color darkens even more and many patients have been wondering about more natural looking options.

About thirty years ago, white or composite resin fillings were introduced ot the dentistry world and provided another filling option.

What options do I have?

  • Composite fillings

Much like a regular metallic amalgam a composite filling is applied directly to the tooth. The composite material is a mixture of plastic and glass also called composite resin. Despite their similarity in application, there are a few major differences between a metal and a composite filling:

  1. Contrary to amalgam, composite fillings bond to the tooth and becomes part of it which means that it will never fall out or get loose. An additional advantage of this bonding is that there is no risk of bacteria making their way between the tooth and the filling.
  2. Being metal, the amalgam expands or contracts depending on the temperature of the food and drink you take in. This may result in a fracture of the tooth. Composite fillings do not shrink and expand.
  3. The amalgam fillings contain mercury. When combined with the other metals, the mercury is rendered inert and is actually necessary for binding the metals together, which gives amalgam fillings their durability. Still, many patients want a metal-free option. Composites are completely metal-free.
  4. White fillings will match the color of the rest of your teeth easily. It is even possible to blend a few shades in order to achieve the perfect match.
  5. Metal fillings require more dental tissue be removed from the teeth before they are tightly packed to fill the gap. This is not the case with composite fillings.

On the down side:

  1. Composite fillings cost more than amalgams.
  2. If you are a heavy coffee and tea drinker or have a habit of eating a lot of staining foods, the color of the filling will be stained, too.
  3. Composite fillings may not suitable for large cavities particularly for those patients who have a grinding or clenching habit.
  • Porcelain

dental-crownsPorcelain offers the same advantages as composite fillings with the addition that they are stronger, more durable and they completely preserve the natural look of your tooth. In addition, they are better suited for large cavities than composite fillings.

The downside is that it may take up to two weeks for the laboratory that constructs the fillings based on the mouth impression that Dr. Mark Samuels would take in order to match the parameters of your mouth exactly, to deliver them. To compensate for this, a temporary filling is provided to keep the drilled out part of your tooth clean. When the filling is ready, Dr. Samuels will install it and check to make sure it fits properly against the other teeth.

An innovation called CEREC technology allows for your dentist to create porcelain fillings right in the office. Dr. Samuels likes to make sure his practice has the most up-to-date technology possible.

Just like with composite fillings, the cost of porcelain is higher. However, it is better to spend some more money once to get the results you want and will be most happy with.

A smile makeover

If you already have a number of metal fillings in place, it is possible to replace them with colored fillings either composite or porcelain. This can be done one tooth at a time or altogether. This will also offer you an excellent opportunity to do some teeth whitening and then place the white fillings so that they can be matched with your new tooth shade.

It is expected that composite and porcelain fillings will completely replace amalgam in the future. They are a safe and reliable means of both repairing damaged teeth and improving your smile.

For further information on the type of filling that would be right for your particular case, call Dr. Samuels’ office at (203) 742-1027 and discuss it with him.

Office Hours

Monday: 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
Tuesday: 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
Wednesday: 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
Thursday: 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
Friday: 7:00 am - 4:00 pm
Saturday: 8:00 am - 1:00 pm

Our Location

Lighthouse Dental Care

88 Ryders Lane
Stratford, CT 06614

Phone: (203) 742-1027
Fax: (203) 380-8390