Tooth Coloured Fillings
A composite filling is a tooth-coloured plastic and glass mixture used to restore decayed teeth. Also it can be used to replace old fillings. Composites are also used for cosmetic improvements of the smile by changing the colour of the teeth or reshaping disfigured teeth.
How is a composite placed?
Following preparation, the dentist places the composite in layers, typically using a specialised light to harden each layer. When the process is finished, the dentist will shape and polish the composite.
What are the advantages of composites?
Aesthetics are the main advantage of composites, since dentists can blend shades to create a colour nearly identical to that of the actual tooth. Composites bond to the tooth to support the remaining tooth structure, which helps to prevent breakage and insulate the tooth from excessive temperature changes.
What are the disadvantages?
After receiving a composite, a patient may experience postoperative sensitivity. Also, the shade of the composite can change slightly if the patient drinks tea, coffee or other staining foods. The dentist can put a clear plastic coating over the composite to prevent the colour from changing if a patient is particularly concerned about tooth colour. Composites tend to wear out sooner than silver fillings in larger cavities, although they hold up as well in small cavities. For large fillings, particularly in the back teeth where chewing forces are greater, we recommend tooth coloured porcelain inlays to add strength and to return teeth to natural appearance and chewing function.
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