Tooth decay is a dental problem that is experienced by the majority of patients. Although strict oral hygiene habits can help control the level of bacteria, plaque, and tartar that is present around the teeth and gums, it is virtually impossible to remove it all, leaving the teeth vulnerable to decay. Fortunately, patients who clean the teeth and gums properly and maintain a regular schedule of dental examinations and cleanings rarely experience more than mild to moderate degrees of tooth decay. This level of decay can be effectively treated through the placement of dental fillings, an important restorative dentistry treatment that strengthens and protects the tooth by replacing damaged tooth material and covering it with a protective seal. When it comes to placing dental fillings, Dr. Roni S. Berbari prefers tooth-colored fillings. For our Montreal patients, tooth-colored filling benefits far outweigh those of traditional metal fillings.
The Benefits of Tooth-colored Fillings
In the past, patients who were in need of a dental filling had no option to consider other than amalgam fillings, those made of a mixture of silver and other metals. While these traditional metal fillings could effectively restore the teeth, they negatively impacted the appearance of the smile and could have long-term effects on the health and state of the teeth. Now, we prefer to treat patients with tooth-colored fillings, which offer patients the following benefits:
- Improved strength: Tooth-colored fillings replace damaged tooth material and restore the tooth by enhancing its strength. The composite filling bonds with the tooth, making it strong and durable.
- Improved aesthetics: Traditional metal fillings are gray in color and stand out greatly against the natural teeth. This can make patients shy about smiling, talking, or laughing in front of others. Tooth-colored fillings can be custom-shaded so that they are an exact match to the color of the natural teeth, creating a seamless and attractive look.
- Long-lasting: Tooth-colored, composite fillings are very durable and can withstand the usual pressure, wear, and tear that the teeth are exposed to. Under proper conditions, tooth-colored fillings can last up to 15 years.
- Tooth preservation: Tooth-colored fillings require the removal of only a minimal degree of tooth enamel, allowing patients to preserve more of the natural tooth than is possible with metal fillings. In addition, metal fillings expand and contract when exposed to hot and cold temperatures; over time this can put pressure on the tooth and cause structural damage. With tooth-colored fillings, patients can avoid this problem.
- Preservation of tooth color: Another downside of metal fillings is that, over time, they have been shown to discolor the natural tooth enamel, making the teeth appear dull and gray. Tooth-colored fillings maintain an attractive, white color and have no effect on the natural color of the teeth.
If you have tooth damage and would like to strengthen the teeth while maintaining the aesthetics of the smile, tooth-colored fillings may be right for you. For patients who have a dental cavity or those who are looking to replace an old, metal filling, tooth-colored fillings are an excellent option. Contact us to learn more about this restorative dentistry treatment. We look forward to hearing from you!