What is it and what does it do?
Composite fillings, sometimes called white fillings, are natural toothcoloured resins that are much stronger, safer and more aesthetically pleasing that the traditional metal fillings. They can be used to restore a decayed tooth or repair a defect. These white composite fillings match the natural colour of your teeth, blend in to your mouth almost seamlessly, and can also strengthen the remaining tooth structure to prevent further breakage to your teeth.
Most patients now choose composite fillings, for the obvious aesthetics, and also because the mercury in amalgam fillings is viewed as potentially toxic. An extra benefit is that composite fillings also create less sensitivity to extremes of hot and cold as they do not conduct heat like traditional metal fillings. Although they are often used on the front teeth where a natural appearance is important, they may also be used on a back tooth when the restoration is small or may be visible when speaking or laughing.
How long does it take?
Like silver fillings, composites can be prepared and placed in one visit. Unlike metal fillings, composite fillings are ready to use right after your visit, while traditional fillings require several hours before they approach full strength.
How long does it last?
Composite fillings can last as long as 8 to 12 years. They must be looked after
Brushing twice a day, cleaning between your teeth is vital with fillings. Floss and inter-dental cleaners (specially shaped brushes) are important tools to remove plaque from the interdental area between the teeth. Plaque in this area can cause dental decay and gum disease.