What Are Your Options For Dental Filling?

Do you need to have a cavity filled, but you're not sure what your options are for filling material? Here is what you need to know about the following materials so that you can make an informed decision.

Direct Fillings and Indirect Fillings

There are two categories of dental fillings, which are known and direct and indirect filings. A direct filling is made inside your mouth, while an indirect filling is made outside your mouth and attached to the tooth later. Each category of filling has its own pros and cons.

You'll find that a direct filling is often used because it is quick to have done and the procedure is relatively inexpensive compared to an indirect filling. However, the indirect filling can potentially last longer and be made into a very specific shape. If you have a particularly large filling, an indirect filling may be best to help restore the tooth.

White Fillings

A white filling is a direct filling material that is manufactured with composite resin. It's a popular choice with dental patients due to how well it blends in with your tooth and how it can be placed in a tooth very quickly. The white filling material also binds to your tooth quite well, with minimal removal of the tooth to get it to work.

Silver Filling

A silver filling is another direct filling material, and it won't blend in with your teeth as well as a white filling does. The material also doesn't bond to the tooth, so a small lip is created in the tooth's surface for the filling material to attach to. Be aware that silver fillings have mercury in them, which is a big problem for those that are worried about the material. 

Inlays And Onlays

Inlays and onlays are indirect fillings and can be made with composite resin or porcelain. By creating the filling outside your mouth, it can be made with stronger materials than those used for white or silver fillings. This helps inlays and onlays last longer than the previously mentioned materials. 

However, be aware that it typically takes two hours to get an inlay or onlay installed. While some dentists have the equipment to create inlays or onlays while you wait at the office, many have to create these filling materials on their own. 

Contact a dental clinic, such as Dental Care Associates, for more information about dental fillings.