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Gainesville, FL, Composite Fillings

Smile Brighter With Tooth-Colored Fillings

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Tooth Colored Fillings

What Is A Composite Filling?

If you develop tooth decay in one or more of your teeth or a cavity, then your dentist will likely recommend that you get a tooth filling in order to ward off infection and protect your tooth from further damage. There are several types of materials used for dental fillings, though the most common types of materials used are amalgam and composite, or composite resin. While amalgam was the most commonly used material for fillings in years past, composite fillings have grown in popularity and use, due to their natural appearance and durability.

A composite filling is made of a tooth-colored resin comprised of a mixture of plastic and glass. They are often considered by patients to be the “best types of filling” because they are nearly imperceivable from your surrounding, natural teeth. Van Dyke General and Implant Dentistry offers a comprehensive range of cosmetic, implant, and general dentistry services, each of which is customized to help our patients achieve a bright, beautiful, and healthy smile. Contact us to schedule an appointment with a dentist in Gainesville, FL, for composite fillings.

How Long Do Composite Fillings Last?

Composite fillings, or tooth-colored fillings, have a more natural appearance than other types of fillings. Our dentists customize each dental filling to match the shade of your tooth, so they are almost indistinguishable to anyone who sees them. This dental filling material comprises a mixture of acrylic (plastic) resin, which is reinforced with a special powdered glass filler. This material is excellent for a variety of dental restoration techniques, including fillings, veneers, inlays, bonding, and crowns, among other procedures.

In some cases, your dentist can use composite resin to restore the physical surface and appearance of broken or chipped teeth. Due to the materials used in their composition, as well as their customized fit to each tooth, composite fillings are highly durable. However, they may have a shorter functional life span when compared with other filling materials, oftentimes lasting 10 years or so when well cared for. For individuals who have a very high risk for cavities, their composite fillings may not last as long as patients with a lower risk of cavities.

Composite Filling Benefits

There are a wide range of benefits associated with getting a composite resin filling for addressing tooth decay. Dental fillings that use composite resin materials offer the following advantages for our patients. For additional information about composite dental fillings, please contact Van Dyke General and Implant Dentistry.

  • Durable
  • A natural appearance
  • Usually completed in one visit
  • Resists breakage and fracture
  • Versatility of use
  • Can fix minor flaws
  • Can address larger damage
  • Minimal tooth sensitivity


Potential Drawbacks Of Composite Fillings

Along with the advantages of composite dental filling is multiple potential drawbacks. If you have concerns, speak with your Gainesville dentist. They can review the details of the materials available for your dental work and help you choose the best option for your needs.

  • Shorter lifespan than amalgam fillings
  • Longer procedure time due to layers
  • Teeth must be very dry during placement
  • May be more expensive than amalgam fillings

Types Of Fillings

Dentists may use a variety of different materials to fill your teeth. In addition to the tooth-colored filling, other types of fillings for teeth may include silver amalgam fillings, ceramic fillings, glass ionomer fillings, and gold fillings. For more information about our available filling options and the best type of filling for your needs, please contact our dental office.

Composite Fillings

Composite resin teeth fillings are made from a combination of plastic and resin materials. The mixture is inserted into the cavity while the mixture is still soft before it is hardened with a bright light. Composite fillings are matched to the color of your natural teeth.

Silver Amalgam Fillings

Amalgam fillings are commonly used to fix dental damage and they are made from a mixture of materials, such as mercury, silver, copper, tin, and zinc. Silver amalgam fillings are durable and relatively inexpensive, but are more noticeable than composite fillings, as they are silver.

Ceramic Fillings

Ceramic fillings are made from a type of porcelain material. As with composite fillings, ceramic fillings can be color-matched to your natural teeth. However, ceramic fillings may be more costly than other types of fillings and they typically require more than one visit to the dentist.

Glass Ionomer Fillings

Glass ionomer fillings are made with a ground-glass filler. As with composite fillings, glass ionomer fillings are tooth-colored to match the natural teeth. These fillings release fluoride for cavity prevention, but are less durable than other types of fillings, such as amalgam fillings.

Gold Fillings

Gold fillings are far more expensive than any other type of filling material. As such, they are less popular than composite resin. However, despite their cost, they are highly durable and can last more than 20 years. These fillings typically require multiple visits to the dentist.

Why Would You Need A Composite Filling?

There is a wide range of different reasons why composite tooth fillings may be required, including the following. If you have recently suffered trauma to your tooth, experience sensitivity while eating or drinking, or you notice early signs of tooth decay, we strongly advise that you contact our office to schedule an appointment with our dental team. Composite fillings can restore your teeth to their natural color and function, while likewise alleviating any discomfort or pain caused by damaged or decayed teeth. Contact us today!

  • Decayed teeth
  • Worn teeth due to teeth grinding (bruxism)
  • Chipped, cracked, or fractures teeth
  • Teeth with spaces between them
  • Damaged teeth due to an accident, injury, or trauma

Composite Fillings Procedure

The tooth filling process with composite fillings is less invasive than that of the traditional amalgam filling, requiring less drilling than patients may have previously experienced with other filling procedures. The area of the cavity is first numbed and the teeth are isolated. Then, the decay is removed from the tooth and the composite is bonded to replace the decayed tooth structure. Composites will last longer if kept clean and regular cleanings are maintained to monitor the material. Over time, all composites will need to be replaced as materials will wear and break down in the mouth. Watch this posterior composite filling video for an inside look at the dental cavity filling procedure. Contact Van Dyke General and Implant Dentistry for more information about this procedure and to schedule an appointment with our dental team.

Do Fillings Hurt?

Composite Fillings In Gainesville, FL

No. Most dental fillings cause little-to-no discomfort during any part of the procedure. This is a result of using highly effective numbing medicines that prevent the patient from experiencing any degree of pain or discomfort. Additionally, due to the small surface area that requires drilling during the composite filling procedure, any post-procedure pain and discomfort is minimal. Before treating the tooth cavity, your dentist will use a local anesthetic that will numb your tooth, gum, and jaw. These medicines prevent your nerves from sending pain signals from your brain to your mouth, so you feel no pain when your dentist begins the procedure. The recovery time for tooth-colored fillings is brief. During this time, you may experience some minor pain, discomfort, and tooth sensitivity, however, these side effects are often mild and dissipate quickly.