Tooth coloured Fillings
A white filling is a tooth coloured resin material usually known as a composite that bonds to the tooth.
A composite filling is a tooth coloured plastic and glass mixture used to restore decayed teeth. Composites are also used for cosmetic improvements of the smile by changing the colour of the teeth or reshaping disfigured teeth.Porcelain Inlays
Porcelain inlays are fillings made of porcelain that fit into or onto the tooth. They are indicated when there is too little tooth structure to predictably support a white filling but there is enough tooth to avoid placing a crown, which is more destructive to the tooth.
Porcelain inlays take 2 visits to complete. The first session is when the decay or old filling is painlessly removed, a detailed impression is taken and a type of white filling is placed as a temporary. The second session is 1-2 weeks later when we bond the porcelain inlay, which fits exactly, to the tooth.
The big advantage of porcelain inlays is that they are much more durable than white fillings, lasting up 30 years. Fillings often reduce the strength of a tooth but porcelain inlays can actually increase a tooth’s strength.Advantages of White Fillings
- They are white! This sounds very basic but there is no way anyone will notice them once within your mouth, making them suitable for any tooth
- Only a small amount of your healthy tooth is removed before a composite filling is applied
- You can use your fillings immediately after they have been placed in your tooth
- They can be bonded, or joined, to your tooth very effectively and once they are the tooth is often stronger than it was before
White Fillings FAQ’s
Many patients prefer tooth coloured fillings because they look natural and other people can’t see them when you laugh or smile. Composite fillings are often called “white fillings” but we actually use a wide range of different shades to exactly match the natural colour of your teeth.
Our clinical audit data shows that 96% of the composite fillings we place on front teeth last for more than 5 years. We are so confident of the quality of our composite fillings.
Yes, though we generally recommend that fillings of any kind be replaced only when this is clinically necessary: for example, where decay occurs beneath or around an existing filling or a filling breaks. Sometimes, when the existing fillings are very large, a composite filling may not be an option – a porcelain inlay may be required.
Yes. Your dentist might be able to use an inlay, veneer or crown. Whether these are suitable depends on the condition of the tooth.