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Composite Fillings: Advantages, Drawbacks and FAQ

A dental filling is the most typical restorative process we normally obtain in our dental visits. Fillings, because the title makes clear, fill the elements of enamel which might be broken by cavities because of tooth decay or by cracks, and fractures. Dentists restore and restore our enamel with fillings utilizing totally different supplies accessible. At the moment we are going to clarify composite fillings, a preferred dental filling materials favored by many due to its beauty white coloration.

What are composite fillings?

Composite fillings are a tooth-colored dental filling materials made out of composite resin. It’s the mixture of the resin matrix, silane, and inorganic filler supplies of glass and quartz. Composite fillings can be utilized in each front and back enamel.

Composite resin is superior in esthetics and sweetness, making it the fabric of alternative, particularly for seen areas of dental restorations. Individuals like composite as a result of it has that desired pure white coloration that they really feel snug with.

As composite veneer, composite resin can also be a preferred beauty various to extra invasive porcelain veneer process, with a view to deal with enamel imperfections and masks stained and discolored enamel.      

Composite fillings are additionally sturdy and resist effectively towards put on and tear over time, though not as metallic amalgam fillings.

Composite fillings process

Your dentist makes positive you might be able to get the filling after doing obligatory assessments and different pre-operative work. They will take X-rays and test for indicators of pulp harm, which you may want a root canal earlier than your composite filling therapy.

That is what you possibly can anticipate throughout your composite filling process:

  1. Your dentist first numbs the realm round your tooth that wants filling utilizing native anesthetics. They will apply a numbing gel earlier than the anesthetic injection.
  2. After that, your dentist drills down the remaining decayed elements of the tooth, and the realm is cleaned and dried totally.
  3. They are going to then apply adhesives to the filling space of your tooth. That is to bond the composite filling materials to the floor of the tooth.
  4.  Subsequent, the composite resin materials is utilized layer by layer to the ready space. For every layer, the dentist will use UV mild to activate and harden the fabric.
  5. Lastly, your dentist shapes, trims, and polishes the composite filling. The dentist will take away the extreme edges, smoothen out the surfaces, and do all ending work to create a desired form and shade that aligns with the remaining pure tooth.

Take a look at this quick animated video to get a glimpse of the composite fillings process:

Professionals and cons of composite fillings

The benefits of composite submitting outweigh the disadvantages, and it is best to know either side.


  • Invisible and natural-looking. Composite is available in many tooth-colored shades which mix in effectively with the pure enamel coloration
  • Sturdy. Composite resin is wear-resistant and extra sturdy white filling, though a lot beneficial for small-to-mid-size fillings.
  • Multifunctional. Composite resin has many capabilities in treating enamel imperfections, from tooth bonding to restoring chipping, or as veneers to coat discolored enamel.
  • Nice bonding to the construction of enamel. Composite fillings are adaptable to the tooth construction and simply bond to enamel. They defend enamel since composite resin bonds effectively at micro stage to the floor of enamel. 
  • No thermal irritations. Not like amalgam, composite resin is plastic and doesn’t expose you to irritating temperature modifications when consuming or ingesting one thing sizzling or chilly.
  • Much less invasive. Composite fillings are typically much less invasive than amalgam fillings. That is as a result of nature of the composite resin process that requires minimal drilling of the pure tooth to be positioned.


  • Not as long-lasting as amalgam and gold. They don’t final so long as amalgam and gold, the metals fillings which final for many years.
  • Extra expansive than amalgam. Composite fillings can price greater than amalgam’s value.
  • Extra chair time and method delicate. Inserting composite fillings might be finished in a single dental appointment, however it may well differ relying on the variety of enamel that require fillings. Additionally, composite will increase your chair time in comparison with amalgam fillings as a result of it’s method delicate. Composite fillings placement requires extra dentists ‘abilities and precision which impacts your therapy time.

How lengthy do composite fillings final?

Usually, composite fillings can final between 5 and eight years. If effectively taken care of, you possibly can have your composite fillings even after 10 years.

Dental amalgam fillings outperform composite fillings in longevity. Amalgams are extra sturdy and last more, however this silver-colored fillings is not going to make beauty look.

Typically, fillings, whether or not composite or amalgam, are typically sturdy once you follow good oral hygiene and comply with upkeep ideas. Poor oral well being accompanied by a poor food plan results in the event of dental caries or tooth decay. This, in flip, decreases the life span of your fillings.

How a lot do composite fillings price?

On common, composite fillings can price between $90 and $250 and are $30 to $40 greater than amalgam. The worth can attain a number of hundred {dollars} relying on the dimensions of cavities, the variety of enamel handled, the placement of enamel, and the dentist’s pricing.

Does insurance coverage cowl composite fillings?

A filling is a routine dental process, and most dental insurance policy could cowl the whole or only a portion of the worth of the therapy.

It may be doable that your insurance coverage considers composite fillings as beauty. Due to this fact, the protection could embody simply typical amalgam. On this case, it’s a must to pay the distinction out of pocket. Nevertheless, yow will discover your individual dental insurance coverage plan which might have extra protection and packages to supply. You usually need to pay a month-to-month quantity to the insurer firm in trade for the advantages of masking your dental work.

Different alternate options to composite fillings

There are different sorts of fillings {that a} dentist can provide.

Amalgam (silver)

Amalgam is one other frequent filling materials which has been used for years in dentistry. It’s well-known for being low-cost and extremely sturdy. The method of amalgam fillings placement is comparatively simpler. Nevertheless, its utilization is fading due to no tooth-color and lack of natural-looking traits.

In keeping with the American Dental Affiliation, amalgam is taken into account “secure and efficient.” There may be nonetheless no scientific proof in regards to the damaging results of mercury publicity within the amalgam materials amongst sure teams of individuals.


Gold fillings are among the many most costly restorative supplies and so they sound like luxurious fillings. Dental filling with gold can last as long as 20 years. Since gold fillings are made away within the lab and later must be cemented within the filling place, it could require a number of visits.

Porcelain (ceramic)

Porcelain, a kind of ceramic, is one other tooth-colored filling possibility. It’s the materials of alternative in inlays and onlays, a filling technique involving extra tooth elimination and lab work. Porcelain fillings are additionally a long-lasting materials with a median lifespan of 15 years.

They’re stain-resistant and require no less than 2 visits to be positioned. Additionally like gold excessive in value, porcelain fillings are costlier than composite resin.

Glass ionomer

Glass ionomer is one other white filling possibility however with much less sturdiness. Attributable to brittle and intolerance traits underneath put on and tear, glass ionomer is just not incessantly used as a common filling materials. It’s primarily utilized in particular conditions on some enamel. Glass ionomer is a biocompatible materials, and it releases and absorbs fluoride, which is a good benefit to struggle tooth decay and forestall cavities.

Ceaselessly requested questions round composite fillings

Does getting composite fillings harm?

No, treating any filling is completed underneath anesthetics. Dentists will numb the realm round your tooth. Due to this fact, getting a composite filling is totally pain-free, and also you don’t need to get anxious about that. Comply with what your dentist recommends each earlier than and after the process to have a way more snug therapy.

Which enamel can composite fillings restore, entrance or again enamel?

You possibly can obtain composite fillings for each back and front enamel. You possibly can profit from the invisible and white coloration of composite for entrance enamel, simply as for again ones. Composite fillings are sturdy and provides you with a phenomenal smile for years. Nevertheless, for bigger cavities with doable further chewing or grinding pressures, dentists could advocate a metallic amalgam filling.

Is composite the very best filling kind?

Composite resin fillings are a extensively used kind of restorative materials with many benefits. They appear pure, bond effectively to the tooth construction, might be repaired simpler, and are sturdy. At the moment, composite is the popular possibility for all teams of individuals, together with adults, kids, pregnant and breastfeeding ladies, and sufferers with allergic reactions to metallic.

When ought to I not get composite fillings?

In case of extreme enamel grinding habits, bruxism, or underneath extreme chewing pressures, composite fillings are inclined to put on down and get broken. Thus, you might be higher off with metallic fillings like amalgam to face up to these pressures. Or, if esthetic is just not your concern, amalgam might be high quality.

Can composite fillings be whitened?

Composite fillings, like another dental work, don’t reply to enamel whitening. Don’t attempt to use any uncommon residence choices to whiten the composite fillings. As an alternative, go to your dentist for doable options like skilled enamel whitening on different pure enamel, and repairing or sprucing the filling.
Dentists will usually advise you to have enamel whitening earlier than your filling therapy. This manner, all of your enamel will stain equally, and when you have a visual composite filling, it decreases the uneven distinction with different pure enamel.



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