Dental Fillings

One of the most common procedures at any dentist office is a filling. When a cavity has decayed a tooth, or teeth have become damaged due to wear, your dentist might suggest a filling.

When you come to the office for your filling appointment, you’ll be given a local anesthetic to numb the area for comfort. The decayed or worn area will be cleaned and prepped. Typically a composite resin (white filling material), will be placed in the preparation. A light will be used to “cure” the material so that it becomes hard. A dental drill is then used to shape the filling material into the natural curves of the tooth. Your bite will be tested and adjusted to ensure that chewing forces are naturally distributed against the opposing teeth.

There are several different types of materials that can be used for a dental filling. The most common is the composite resin. It has tooth colored plastic and glass materials for a more cosmetic appearance. Silver amalgam fillings are another alternative, and would typically be placed on a back molar.

The best type of filling for your specific situation will depend on:

  • location of the cavity,
  • extent of the cavity,
  • as well as personal preference.