At Starbright Dental in Southport, we give life back to your teeth with fillings and restorations. We are proud to say that we use composite resin and glass ionomer fillings to restore your teeth and improve their strength and structure. Gone are the days of amalgam fillings. Instead, we use the latest technology to create dental applications that are tooth coloured and that look like they were always a part of your smile.
What is restorative dentistry?
Restorative dentistry is the integrated management of oral health problems along with restoring the mouth to both a functional and esthetic state. Many of the procedures fall under the category of prosthodontic dentistry which including fillings, veneers, crowns, bridges, full and partial implants and dental implants.
If your beautiful smile is suffering because of worn, decayed, chipped, cracked, damaged or missing teeth, a tooth restoration is what you need. At Starbright Dental we use two types of restoration methodologies to treat your specific dental issue:
Fillings are the most common type of direct tooth restoration which involves placing a filling into a cavity to prevent further deterioration of the tooth structure. Fillings are normally done when you have a cavity that could worsen and create bigger problems in future. Direct tooth restoration involves placing a filling into a prepared tooth cavity immediately. Done in one sitting at our practice, this, the Starbright team will decide if glass ionomer or composite resin fillings are best suited to your condition. The procedure is quick, efficient and the results, long-lasting.
Not as quick and to the point as a direct restoration, indirect tooth restorations involve more than one visit to Starbright Dental. Indirect restorations involve creating custom-made devices such as crowns, bridges, on-lays and inlays. These devices will need to be moulded and created in an offsite laboratory and once they come back, you will need to come in to have them fitted. Starbright Dental uses tooth-coloured composite resin crowns, inlays and on-lays.
What is an amalgam filling?
An amalgam filling is usually known as a “silver filling” and is comprised of a mixture of mercury, silver, tin and copper. Mercury, which makes up almost half of the compound, binds the metals together in order to provide a strong and durable filling. When combining with the other metals, the mercury does form a safe and stable compound. This is a more archaic form of fillings that have been around since 1895. Although they are long-lasting and economical, they are also far more noticeable than any tooth coloured resin fillings. There are also people who are allergic to the metals that are in the amalgam making them far less desirable than composite resin or glass ionomer fillings.
What is the difference between composite resin and glass ionomer fillings?
Glass ionomer fillings are made from just that – glass. These types of fillings are, therefore, fairly weak and often only used on ‘filling’ baby teeth or the parts of your teeth that don’t take on the pressure of a bite like your teeth’s ‘necks’. Glass ionomer fillings are quick to prepare and form a chemical attachment to your tooth almost instantly. They also can release fluoride which benefits the overall health of your teeth as it prevents further tooth decay.
Composite resin fillings are made of a ceramic and plastic compound. Resin can mimic the appearance of natural teeth meaning that these fillings are almost invisible. The resin bonds easily to your tooth surface and require less drilling due to its flexibility. However composite resin fillings only last five to seven years – half that of an amalgam filling. Should you have a more serious cavity that needs filling, a composite resin filling will be the better choice. Made of a putty-like resin, the substance is placed in your cavity and then hardened or ‘cured’. They are very strong and are often used to restore the toughest of teeth in the back of our mouths.
If you think you may have a cavity and need it to be filled, book a consultation with us today and let our expert team assess the situation.