In contrast to the more common silver amalgam fillings, white fillings are made of a resin compound that is customized to exactly match the shade of your teeth, therefore making them invisible to the casual observer.
Why Do I Need White Fillings?
White fillings primarily serve a cosmetic desire for teeth that appear natural. One consideration is that you may want to have your teeth professionally whitened by Dr. Doris Giraldo before she matches the color of the resin filling. That way, you have fresh, whitened teeth and “white” fillings that exactly match your newly brightened teeth. Otherwise, Dr. Giraldo can match the present color tone of your teeth.
How Are White Fillings Installed?
White fillings are installed in the same way as regular, metal fillings. Dr. Giraldo will clean out a cavity and then prepare the tooth for a filling. Instead of using something like silver amalgam, Dr. Giraldo will fill the hole with a material shaded to the color of your natural tooth enamel.
Am I a Good Candidate for White Fillings?
Any patient who needs to have cavities cleaned and filled is a good candidate for white fillings. So, you should not hesitate to discuss this option with Dr. Giraldo if she finds a cavity that needs to be filled, or if you have an existing filling fail and need a replacement. Dr. Giraldo can also assist patients who would like to replace an amalgam filling for aesthetic reasons.
How Do White Fillings Compare to Other Types of Fillings?
The most common alternative to white fillings is silver amalgam. Silver amalgam, of course, is quite noticeable, particularly if the filling is in your front teeth and shows with your smile. However, another fact about silver amalgam is that a large percentage of the material contains mercury. Mercury is a known poison and, even though it is generally thought safe to use in dental procedures, one might prefer fillings without such a toxic component. Other advantages include:
- The composite fillings bond to the natural teeth, which can restore your tooth to your tooth’s natural strength. Amalgam fillings can damage and weaken your tooth and eventually cause it to break.
- Composite fillings are known to cause less sensitivity than amalgam fillings.
- Composites also require less tooth preparation, meaning less removal of your own tooth structure, especially if the tooth is prepared using the Waterlase Laser.