Back 17 May 2018

10 FAQs about Fillings

What is a filling?

A filling is a procedure used to restore a hole in a tooth, or to repair a chipped tooth and return it to its original shape. Dentists use materials that bond to your teeth, and are non-toxic.

How do you know when you need a filling?

Sometimes there are no signs that you have decay in your tooth - The cavity can only be seen by a dentist and sometimes only seen on an x-ray. However if you do have symptoms commonly the first sign that you need a filling is sensitivity or even pain while eating or drinking sweet or very hot or cold foods and drinks. 

How does a dentist place a filling?

After deciding a filling is a good option and after discussing whether the procedure may be uncomfortable you may ellect to have a local anaesthetic that will numb the tooth and area around it.  Once the area is numb the decay is removed and a color-matched filling is bonded into place. 

Does getting a filling hurt?

Filling procedures are normally painless due to the anaesthetic that dentists use. There may be discofort and bruising after your procedure caused by the numbing process and sometimes trauma to the gum around the tooth - the gum sometimes needs to be pushed aside to place the restoration successfully. Your tooth may be sensitive for a while and this, in most cases subsides over a couple of days. If your filling is deep and close to the middle of the tooth where the nerve is, and feels like it is not settling, contact your dentist for advice. It maybe that your tooth may require further treatment such as a root canal treatment or (worst case scenario) extracting

What are fillings made from?

You may have heard of fillings being made of many different materials: while in the past the most common materials were mercury-silver amalgam and even gold, today at Milford Dentists we use colour matched tooth coloured composite resin - this consists of glass beads in a plastic matrix. We also use glass ionomer filling material which slowly release fluoride and works very well in some decay prone areas of the mouth

What are ‘amalgam’ fillings?

Amalgam fillings have been very popular over the past 150 years of dentistry, and while known as Amalgam, are mostly made up of 50% mercury and metals like silver, tin, zinc and copper.  At Milford Dentists we offer an Amalgam Filling Removal service, for customers wanting to replace these fillings with white composite fillings.

Why go for Composite fillings?

  1. White fillings bond to your teeth making your tooth stronger
  2. They are colour-matched and can blend into your smile
  3. See our blog "why choose white or tooth coloured fillings"

How long do fillings last?

While many sources will tell you that fillings will only last 5-7 years, white composite fillings can last for over many many years if they are well looked after by both dentist and patient. Of course, maintaining a high daily level of oral hygiene is a good start to making your fillings last, but your smoking status and dietary choices can also affect how long a filling lasts.

Will fillings look unnatural in my smile?

One of the most important benefits of white composite fillings is that they visually match the rest of your teeth, and can brighten your smile overall. 

 How can I book a consultation for fillings?

You can contact Milford Dentists on the phone or online to ask about booking a consultation for fillings or filling removal. With a particular interest in placing white composite fillings and cosmetic dentistry, we promise not only to fix your problem tooth, but also to improve your smile and send you out the door looking happier than ever!