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Learn All About Dental Fillings

Is it the first time that you are going to have a dental filling and you are not sure how the experience is going to be or what the dentist is going to do? Do not worry, because in this post, I am going to outline all you need to know about dental fillings.

What are dental fillings?

A filling is a way to restore a tooth damaged by decay to its normal function and shape. When a dentist gives you a filling, he or she first removes the decayed tooth structure, cleans the affected area, and then fills the clean cavity with a filling material.

What is the dental filling for?

Dental fillings are often used to fill a cavity in the tooth. However, dental fillings can also be used to recover lost tooth structure due to wear and tear due to tooth grinding (bruxism) or to replace an area of ​​a broken tooth.

Composite fillings

Possibly the most common filling is the composite fillings (or more accurately called Dental composite resin fillings) which are types of synthetic resins used in dentistry as adhesive restorative material. They are also known as “resin-based composites” or simply “filling resins”.

Dental composites also have a micromechanical retention property that makes the composite more effective for filling small cavities where amalgam fillings are not as effective and could therefore fall out (due to the micromechanical retention property of amalgam).

Synthetic resins evolved as restorative materials because they are insoluble, have good dental appearance, are insensitive to dehydration, are easy to handle, and are reasonably cheap.

Many studies have compared the longevity of resin-based composite restorations with the longevity of silver-mercury amalgam restorations. Depending on the skill of the dentist, the characteristics of the patient, and the type and location of the damage, composite restorations can have similar longevity to amalgam restorations. Compared to amalgam, the appearance of resin-based composite restorations is far superior.

Composite fillings turn out to be quite durable and ideal for small to medium restorations in various areas of the mouth that perform adequate chewing.

What is the process of filling a tooth?

Before filling the cavities, the dentist will numb the teeth, gums, and surrounding skin to prevent and reduce discomfort during the procedure.

Next, with a bur, he will remove the decay in the tooth and fill the cavity with a filling. This process only takes a few minutes.

Once the dentist has finished filling your mouth, your mouth will probably be asleep for a few more hours.

When to replace a dental filling?

If additional decay develops around a filling, whether or not it is damaged, your dentist may choose to repair the tooth by replacing the filling or, if the affected area is very large, opt for other types of restorations made indirectly in the laboratory and which will then cement to the tooth socket.

These types of restorations are:

Dental fillings typically last for many years before they need to be replaced. But dental fillings can wear down over the years due to

chewing. If you clench or grind your teeth, you may need to have your fillings replaced sooner.

Also, if you notice any type of anomaly in the teeth, such as cracks or worn areas, go to the dentist to have the filling replaced as soon as possible. Continuing to chew with a damaged filling can cause the tooth to crack and require additional repair, which is more expensive and complicated than a simple cavity filling.

If additional decay develops around a filling, regardless if it is damaged or not, your dentist may choose to repair the tooth by replacing the filling, or if the affected area is very large, other types of restorations performed indirectly on the tooth. laboratory and then cemented into the tooth cavity.

These types of restorations are:


This encrustation fails to reach the cusps (tooth tips). It is the least invasive restoration because it does not reduce the cusps and is commonly used in premolars and molars with loss of medium structure, either due to caries or wear.


This embedding involves more of the dental surface, covering some of its cusps. They are also used in molars and premolars, but when the loss of structure is greater than one third.


It is the inlay that surrounds all the cusps of the tooth. But without encompassing the entire dental perimeter up to the gum (a dental crown would be used for that). They can be used to rehabilitate a severely damaged tooth, for example in the case of severe caries.

These techniques, regardless of the type of inlay performed according to the circumstances, aim to guarantee the patient’s resistance, duration, functionality, dental aesthetics and precision.

This type of inlays made in the laboratory can be made of two materials: composite (same as fillings) or ceramics. It will be the dentist who will determine the type of material according to the destruction of the tooth, the type of occlusion of the patient and the material of the opposing tooth.

Now that you know what dental fillings consist of, remember that the best way to avoid them is to brush your teeth well and perform at least two dental cleanings in a dental clinic every year.


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My name is Debra Cargill, I live in my home in Springfield, Massachusetts and have been looking for new direction in my life. I started blogging recently and I've discovered a new passion in life. This blog is all about health, wellness, life issues and about lifestyle in general where I cover a broad range of topics on the subjects....

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