White or Tooth Colored Fillings
White fillings (composite resins) are restorations that can be used in the front and back teeth. They are made up of light sensitive composite quartz agents. White fillings come in a variety of shades that will match the colour of most teeth. Although they do not have the same strength as metal fillings, they are more aesthetically pleasing and have a natural appearance.
White fillings are bonded to the natural tooth, whereas, metal fillings are mechanically held in place within the natural tooth. As such, white fillings require less tooth structure to be removed and are generally a more conservative restoration. However, the bonding process is affected by moisture contamination and so white fillings are usually not done if the filling is deep, or where the saliva in the mouth cannot be controlled.
White fillings can usually be placed in one appointment. During the appointment, the tooth requiring the filling is prepared with minimal removal of sound tooth structure. A mild chemical (etch) is placed to roughen the surfaces of the tooth. Next, a bonding agent is applied to the roughened surface to help the composite resin stick better to the tooth. Composite resin is then placed into the prepared tooth in layers. Composite resin is soft so it is easily manipulated and shaped to resemble the natural tooth form. Each layer is cured (hardened) using a bright light. Once the last layer has been cured, the filling is shaped and polished to its final form, to give it a natural appearance.
With white fillings, you can chew and eat right away because the light instantly hardens them. You may experience some sensitivity to temperature for a few days to a week. Contact us if it persists.