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Learn more about dental fillings and different types of fillings

In general, dental fillings are a stage of tooth restoration that usually takes place after the removal of tooth decay. It should be noted that tooth decay is a bacterial infection that can spread to other parts of the mouth if left untreated. In fact, filling teeth helps prevent further tooth decay by closing the spaces that bacteria can enter. Materials used for filling include gold, porcelain, composites (colored tooth fillings) and amalgam (alloys of mercury, silver, copper, tin and sometimes zinc).

Composite is usually used for front teeth due to its tooth color and is more expensive than amalgam, but amalgam has a higher strength that is used to fill the upper and lower jaw posterior teeth.

Types of fillers (which is better)

Filling is a way to repair a tooth damaged by caries. For example when a dentist in Canada fills your tooth, he or she will first remove the decayed tooth material, clean the affected area, and then fill the cleaned cavity with the filling material.

But there are different materials for filling teeth, which can be different for each tooth and the amount of caries level. These materials are as follows:


Gold fillings that are made in the laboratory and then implanted in the dentist. Gold deposits are well tolerated by gum tissue and may last for more than 20 years. For these reasons, many scientific papers consider gold to be the best filler. However, it is often the most expensive choice and requires multiple visits.


Amalgam (silver) fillers are abrasion resistant and relatively inexpensive. But because of the dark color, porcelain or composite restoratives are more noticeable and are not usually used in very visible areas such as front teeth.


Composite (plastic) resins match the color of your teeth and are therefore used where the natural appearance is desired.

To fill, the filling material is mixed and placed directly into the tooth cavity created by the caries, which hardens in that area after a very short time.

Composites may not be a good material for filling large cavities because they may break or corrode over time. They also stain and stain on coffee, tea, or tobacco, and are usually about 3 years old, while amalgam is more than 10 years old.


Porcelain fillers, called open layers, are made to order in the laboratory and then attached to the tooth. They can be matched to tooth color. They are also more resistant to beverages and dyes and stain later. These Chinese restorers generally cover most of the tooth surface and cost the same as gold fillings; In case of decay or fracture of a large part of the tooth, a crown or tooth cap may be recommended.

Caries that has reached the nerve can be treated in two ways:

  • Through root canal treatment (where the damaged nerve is removed)
  • Through a method called pulp cup (which tries to keep the nerve alive)

After denervation, the canals are filled with a substance called gutta percha.

How to fill a tooth

If your dentist decides to fill the cavity, he or she will first remove the decay and clean the affected area. The cleaned cavity will then be filled with any of the types of materials described above.

How do we know that our teeth need filling?

Only your dentist can tell if you have cavities or caries that need to be filled. During the examination, your dentist uses a small mirror to examine the surfaces of each tooth.

Anything that looks unnatural is examined with special tools. Your dentist may also x-ray the whole mouth or part of it. The type of treatment your dentist chooses depends on the extent of the damage caused by the caries.

What is temporary filling?

Sometimes teeth need to be filled temporarily. Temporary tooth filling is also called tooth dressing. Temporary filling is used under the following conditions:

  • After denervation or root canal treatment
  • In case of stimulation of dental nerve pulp
  • If you need emergency dental treatment (such as having a toothache)

Temporary filling is done only in these cases; Temporary means that it does not last. They usually break, or wear out, within 1 month. Be sure to contact your dentist to replace your temporary filling with a permanent one. If you do not do this, your teeth may become infected or have other side effects.

How should I take care of my filled teeth?

To maintain full teeth, you need to follow good oral hygiene practices. Get regular help from your dentist to decontaminate and check your teeth, and brush your teeth with fluoride-containing toothpaste to have healthy teeth. If your tooth is very sensitive, if you feel a sharp edge, call your dentist if you notice a gap in the filling or if a piece of filling is missing.


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