Composite Resin Fillings (Tooth Colored Fillings)

Many people still have silver/mercury fillings in their mouths from years past. These fillings are not particularly pleasing to the eye, and we know that by unavoidable design, silver/mercury fillings ultimately result in a weaker tooth structure. Porcelain inlays and Tooth Colored Restorations (onlays) create fillings that are not only beautiful (or unnoticeable) but also add strength to weakened teeth. These restorations are esthetically pleasing and very strong thanks to new bonding technologies.

Fortunately, silver fillings can safely be replaced with Tooth-Colored Restorations.

Composite Resin Fillings

Composite fillings are a mixture of powdered glass and plastic resin, sometimes referred to as white, plastic, or tooth-colored fillings.  It is used for fillings, inlays, veneers, partial, and complete crowns.

Advantages of Composite Resin Fillings

  • Strong and durable
  • Tooth colored
  • Single visit for fillings
  • Resists breaking
  • Maximum amount of tooth preserved
  • Small risk of leakage if bonded only to enamel
  • Does not corrode
  • Resistance to furthur decay is moderate and is easy to find 

Disadvantages of Composite Resin Fillings

  • Moderate occurrence of tooth sensitivity
  • Cost more than dental amalgam
  • Material shrinks when hardened and could lead to further decay and/or temperature sensitivty
  • Requires more than one visit for inlays, veneers, and crowns
  • May wear faster than dental enamel
  • May leak over time when bonded beneath the layer of enamel 

Advantages of Tooth-Colored Restorations

There are many advantages to tooth-colored restorations. Resin onlays are bonded to the teeth creating a tight, superior fit to the natural tooth. Such restorations can be used in instances where much of the tooth structure has been lost. The tooth remains intact and stronger.

Since the resin used in tooth-colored restorations contain fluoride this can help prevent decay. The resin wears like natural teeth and does not require placement at the gum line, which is healthier for your gums!

The result is a beautiful smile!

Replacing Silver Fillings with a Tooth Colored Restoration

You can have your silver fillings replaced with tooth-colored restorations (onlays). This process requires two appointments.

Your First Appointment:

  1. The old filling is removed along with any additional decay.
  2. An impression is made of your teeth. A model of your teeth is made and sent to the lab.
  3. A temporary onlay is placed on the tooth.

At the Lab: A resin is carefully placed into the model of your teeth. It is then designed to look natural.

Your Second Appointment:

  1. The temporary onlay is removed.
  2. A conditioning gel is placed on your tooth to prepare it for the new onlay.
  3. Bonding cement is placed on the tooth and a high intensity light bonds the resin to the tooth.
  4. The tooth is then polished.

Your teeth are restored to a natural look and feel, they are stronger and the tooth is protected!