Metal-Free Tooth Fillings & Repair Beverly HillsMake an Appointment
Have you ever found yourself trying not to stare when a friend laughs — and all you can see is that line of metal fillings in their teeth? Have you felt uncomfortable realizing that everyone can see the metal fillings in your teeth whenever your mouth is wide open?
Just like every dentist, I fill your cavities to treat tooth decay. But since I don't use metal, your teeth always look natural and beautiful. Metal fillings can contain toxic materials, and I want you to be healthy in every way.
A filling is a highly effective treatment for tooth decay. If you don't have the decay treated, it will only get worse, leading to damage of the nerve and other conditions that can require even more complex and invasive treatment, such as root canals.
Fillings are also called restoration because that's what they do: They restore the integrity of the damaged or decayed tooth. Sometimes fillings are used with chipped or broken teeth as well.
Here's how it works: We start by numbing the area of the mouth around the damaged tooth with a safe, fast-acting local anesthetic. Thanks to this anesthetic, you don't feel any pain during the procedure, and you're able to get through it calmly.
Next, I use a drill to remove the decayed part of the tooth and clean it out. That leaves an empty space, which I fill with a restoration material. If the cavity is particularly deep, I line the surface of the cavity floor with a layer of protective material.
Types of Filling Materials
There are lots of options when you are searching for an exact tooth filling material, but composite and porcelain are typically recommended today greatly because composite looks and feels like real teeth, costs less, and is nontoxic, unlike most metals. The options of the tooth filling material used to depend greatly on the problem, back/front, and the severity of the cavity.
Given below are some of the various filling materials that have been or are being used worldwide.
Cast Gold Filling
Gold is very strong when used in fillings, and it lasts incredibly long. However, it's quite expensive, and if it's visible when you smile, you might not appreciate the distraction of the gold color.
Silver Amalgam Filling
Traditional "silver" metal amalgam fillings are also strong and durable, and they stand up well against chewing. However, metal fillings can cause discoloration of the tooth and even provoke fractures in it.
In addition, metal amalgam fillings contain mercury. Because of the potential toxicity of mercury, I have taken the proactive steps, as have many other dentists, of working exclusively with composite materials, which aren't hazardous to my patients.
Composite Filling (Tooth Colored)
We want your teeth to look natural and beautiful, even if you have fillings. That's why we opt for different versions of composite and porcelain, which look real, cost less, and are nontoxic.
I mostly choose composite fillings, which are tooth-colored and have a natural look, as do porcelain fillings. With composite material, you often can't see where the filling is, even if you're looking hard.
Composites also bond well with your natural teeth, and they don't contain any toxic materials. Yes, they can chip and stain, just like your natural teeth can, but fixing them is so much easier and less expensive than repairing a damaged metal filling.
To apply a composite filling, I start by applying layers of a sealing wax in your natural tooth color. I then use an ultraviolet light to cure the composite. Finally, I remove any excess materials, and I shape and polish the filling until it looks perfect and natural.
Sometimes you may have a tooth that's so damaged that there's not enough structure to hold fillings in place. In this case, I use what's called an indirect filling. To make an indirect filling, I take an impression of your mouth. The filling is then created in the lab, where it's designed to be a perfect fit. Inlays and onlays are the primary types of indirect fillings we apply in our dental spa.
Almost everyone needs fillings at some point. When it's your turn, give us a call to see how we can help you.