There are two types of filling, direct and indirect restorations. Direct restorations occur in a single visit and are placed directly into a prepared cavity by the dentist. The material used is usually a plastic resin and it is set using a UV light. Indirect fillings occur over multiple visits and involve the creation of inlays and onlays, crowns or veneers that the dentist fits over your tooth.
Materials Used for Fillings:
Amalgam Fillings: Amalgam fillings are a blend of metals such as silver, copper, tin and mercury. The mercury intake into the blood from a single amalgam surface is 0.2% of the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended daily intake. Amalgam fillings have been widely used for over 150 years and are cost effective, strong and durable.
Cerec®: Cerec® is a material used for indirect fillings that can be set in a single visit. Cerec® provides a natural appearance and are strong, durable and provide more opportunity to conserve your tooth structure. Using a Cerec® machine and CAD-CAM software your dentist takes an optical impression of your tooth to produce the restoration and your dentist will then bond this to your tooth. For more information please view the SD Cerec® website.
Composite Fillings: the most widely used because of their natural appearance and they can be matched to the shade of your teeth. They are made from plastic resin and filler and are bonded to teeth. They are not as strong as amalgam and do not last as long.
Glass Ionomer Fillings: not as strong as composite fillings, these are used along the gum line, in children’s molars and to cement dental crowns. They are made from polyacylic acid and resin.