Composite Fillings

Most people have fillings of one sort or another but today, because we are much more conscious of our smile, we can choose a natural looking alternative – a composite or tooth-coloured filling material. These are a popular alternative to the silver amalgam filling and are preferred for their appearance. There other major benefit is that they are Mercury free as opposed to the usual  metal fillings.

Composite fillings are more difficult to place than silver fillings so may take your dentist longer to complete and because they are considered to be a cosmetic treatment, they are not always available on the NHS.

There are two main types of white fillings-  direct and indirect

Direct filling

The white filling   is inserted into your tooth in a single visit to your dentist. This immediate or direct form of treatment is ideal teeth with smaller cavities when cosmetics is a concern.

The advantages of direct white fillings

They are ideally suited to people with small or medium tooth cavities who desire a cosmetic result.

Disadvantages of direct white fillings

The main disadvantage is that in larger fillings they may not be as durable and the indirect technique would normally  be considered instead if a white filling was desired.

Indirect filling

Unlike the direct filling   the filling is  produced in a dental laboratory before being inserted into your tooth.

This requires two visits. The first visit involves the preparation for the filling where a ,mould is taken and a temporary filling placed.  At the second visit the filling  ,which has been made in the laboratory,  is  cemented into the tooth.

The indirect method is more costly because it involves a laboratory and two visits to the practice but it results in a very durable and cosmetically pleasing white filling when the alternative direct technique might not be suitable.