Cavity Filling Types: What’s Best for You?

Ouch! Cavities hurt!

If you end up with a cavity, it can feel out of your control. You need it filled and that’s all there is to it, right?

Actually, you do get some choice in the matter. Today they offer a number of cavity filling options, so you can find one that works best for you!

A Guide to Your Cavity Filling Options

Open up… your awareness that is. Read on to learn all about tooth filling and your options in the matter.

Amalgam Fillings

For well over 100 years, dentists turned to amalgam fillings to stop tooth decay from cavities. With these, the tooth is filled with a mixture of metals, though people often refer to them as’silver fillings’ because of their silvery appearance.

These fillings last a long time, as the metals tend not to break while chewing. They also cost less than other types of fillings.

But, one of the constituents raises a big concern for people. Roughly half of an amalgam filling comes from mercury alloy.

Some people panic, as this substance causes neurological toxicity in humans at certain exposure levels. But, the mercury remains sealed within the other metals and only minuscule amounts seep out as a vapor.

Amalgam research suggests that you need not worry about this filling type. They see no evidence to suggest that these fillings cause mercury poisoning.

You should worry more about the problems associated with letting tooth decay go. The worst part of this metal filling is that it stands out more than other types.

Gold Fillings

This type of filling also stands out among the pearly whites. But, some people find gold more palatable, and even desirable.

People pay a significantly higher price for this filling, but it will last you around 20 years. Aside from the fact that it fills your tooth with precious metal, it does not contain any mercury, making it a great option.

Composite Fillings

Composite fillings consist of quartz or glass filler. They will closely match the color of your tooth.

These fillings offer decent durability while chewing. But, they may stain some over time and will only last about 5-10 years. They cost less than most other types of fillings though, with an exception of amalgam.

Ceramic Fillings

This porcelain filling will match your tooth color nicely. This costs more than composite fillings, but also lasts longer and does not hold onto stains.

Note though, ceramic fillings need to be a little bit larger. This prevents breakage.

Glass Ionomer

When children require fillings or adults need them below the gum line, this type works nicely. This clear filling, made of acrylic and glass, slowly releases fluoride.

According to the ADA, fluoride protects teeth against decay and strengthens them. So, this option may ward off future cavities in people who are prone to developing them.

The downside of these is they do not tend to last as long as other types. They cost around the same as composite fillings, but typically last less than 5 years.

How Much Do Fillings Cost?

Depending on the filling type you choose and how many teeth you need to get filled, they may cost you anywhere from $50 to $500. You can expect to pay the most for cast gold and the least for amalgam.

Protect Your Smile

Your smile is important. Protect it by promptly choosing the right cavity filling for you when a cavity strikes.

I want to help keep your smile beautiful. Book an appointment today!