An Attractive Alternative to Metal Fillings
Traditionally, dental amalgam (“silver”) was the material of choice for treating teeth with cavities – in fact, older patients likely still have a few in their smiles. At Bellevue Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, we’re happy to now offer a much-improved alternative in the form of tooth-colored composite resin. In addition to their clear aesthetic value, tooth-colored fillings are reliable, safe, and long-lasting. Please contact us if you have questions about our restorative services or if you’re ready to schedule a first appointment here in Bellevue, WA.
The Tooth-Colored Fillings Process
In virtually all cases, Dr. Preet can place a tooth-colored filling over the course of just one appointment. After determining the best shade of composite resin for your unique smile, she will prepare the tooth by removing any decayed portions and then apply the material directly to the surface. After sculpting the composite resin into a pleasing and lifelike shape, a curing light will harden it securely in place.
What are the Benefits of Tooth-Colored Fillings?
- Like the name implies, tooth-colored fillings are very aesthetically pleasing and will practically disappear right into your smile. It will be like the cavity never even happened.
- Because tooth-colored fillings don’t contain any metal, they aren’t overly sensitive to changes in temperature. Patients can look forward to improved oral comfort on a regular basis.
- As long as they are cared for properly with diligent oral hygiene and six-month checkups here in Bellevue, tooth-colored fillings should be able to thrive for many years.
Tooth-Colored Fillings FAQs
Is this the first time that you or anyone in your family has gotten a tooth-colored filling? The procedure is very simple and routine, but of course it’s natural to have questions about any dental treatment that you’re unfamiliar with. Dr. Taneja always enjoys helping patients learn more about dentistry and will make sure that you are completely comfortable and confident with your care before placing any filling. Below are some questions about fillings that we’ve often heard from our patients. Is there anything else you’d like to know? Reach out today to schedule a consultation.
How long do tooth-colored fillings last?
Fillings do not have a set lifespan. Some can last for a very long time before they eventually need to be replaced. The average lifespan for tooth-colored fillings is around 10 to 12 years. If you want to keep your current fillings for as long as possible, then you need to take good care of them by brushing and flossing at least twice every day. Dr. Taneja can check the condition of your fillings during a regular checkup to see if they need to be replaced in the near future.
Are tooth-colored fillings safe?
There are no health concerns associated with tooth-colored fillings. In fact, they’re considered safer than traditional amalgam fillings because they contain no mercury. Also, while some people have allergic reactions to the metal in amalgam fillings, tooth-colored fillings are made out of a mix of ceramic and plastic, which rarely triggers such a reaction. Of course, every patient is different; we need to review your oral and overall health history before we move on to the treatment.
How much does a tooth-colored filling cost?
The exact cost of a filling depends on a variety of factors, including the location of the practice and the number of fillings needed. We can give you a more specific estimate once we’ve examined your mouth and determined that tooth-colored fillings are right for you. If you have dental insurance, you can usually expect it to provide at least partial coverage for fillings. Most plans pay around 80% for basic restorations, but you should check with your insurance provider to see what coverage your specific policy provides.
What is a tooth-colored filling?
Tooth-colored fillings are often referred to as composite fillings because they are made out of a composite resin that consists of plastic, silica, and glass particles. This mixture mimics a lot of the qualities of natural enamel – not just the color, but also its translucency and its ability to resist wear and tear on a regular basis. A well-made filling can make it look like the tooth was never damaged in the first place.
Are tooth-colored fillings better than silver?
Dr. Taneja generally recommends tooth-colored fillings over traditional silver ones for a variety of reasons:
- Tooth-colored fillings contain no mercury and thus are not associated with any health risks linked to mercury exposure.
- Tooth-colored fillings bond directly with the tooth, making them stronger than silver fillings and allowing them to provide better support to the dental structure.
- Tooth-colored fillings do not change size in response to temperature change.
- Tooth-colored fillings blend in with the natural tooth much better than silver fillings.
Are tooth-colored fillings more expensive than silver?
On average, tooth-colored fillings are more expensive than silver, but this is balanced out by all the benefits that the former has to offer. Silver fillings are less attractive, weaken the overall structure of the tooth, and can be a cause of concern for your overall health thanks to the mercury they contain. We can discuss the pros and cons of the different types of fillings during your consultation.