Tooth-Colored Fillings - Torrance, CA
Creating Natural Smiles
When you experience tooth decay or minor chips and cracks, it’s important to get these problems fixed as quickly as possible. Without repair, these issues may spread or worsen. At Blue Coast Dental Group, we use tooth-colored composite resin fillings to seamlessly restore smiles. Our Torrance dentist and team can quickly and painlessly recreate lost tooth structure, leaving patients with flawless smiles they’re proud to share.
When We Recommend Fillings
Fillings are necessary for patients who have minor tooth decay or damage. Restoring the tooth with a filling prevents the spread of damage and recreates a flawless, natural smile. We may use tooth-colored fillings in the following situations:
- To repair teeth with cavities that only affect the surface of the tooth
- To recreate dental structure that is lost due to chips or cracks in enamel
- To conceal cosmetic flaws like deep set stains that are unresponsive to teeth whitening
- To reshape a tooth that is too small or otherwise oddly shaped within the smile line
- To increase the thickness of the other layer of teeth for patients with tooth sensitivity
The Tooth-Colored Filling Process
We begin by numbing the area to be treated. Then, we remove any damaged tooth structure and clean and sanitize the area. An etching material is painted onto the tooth to create more pits and grooves for the composite to fuse to. Shaded to precisely match the color of surrounding teeth, composite resin can then be applied directly to the prepared tooth. Once the putty-like resin is molded into the ideal shape, we use a low-heat curing light to harden the material. Finally, the tooth is smoothed and polished.
Amalgam Fillings vs. Tooth-Colored Fillings
Traditionally, silver-colored metal amalgams were used to repair teeth with minor damage or decay, but most practices now use tooth-colored composite resin materials almost exclusively. There are many reasons this shift has occurred. Some of the most important benefits of composite resin fillings over traditional amalgam restorations include:
- The most obvious benefit is the natural appearance of the tooth-colored composite fillings compared to the darkly-colored amalgams.
- They preserve more healthy tooth structures. Amalgam fillings are crafted outside of the mouth and held in place by wedges etched into tooth enamel. Composite resin can be applied directly to the existing structure, making it a more conservative solution.
- Because the composite resin seeps into even the smallest pits and grooves in the teeth, a stronger bond is formed between the filling and the tooth. That means patients are less likely to experience further tooth decay caused by bacteria accumulating between the filling and tooth enamel.
- Metal expands and contracts at a much higher rate than tooth enamel. This may lead to unnecessary strain or damage to the remaining tooth structure.
In addition to repairing damaged and decayed teeth, we can also use composite resin to transform the cosmetic appearance of the smile. Applied directly to the tooth in a putty-like consistency, we can spread and shape the composite resin to create a flawless, natural look and feel in just one appointment.
For many patients, esthetic dental bonding is a viable alternative to more advanced procedures like porcelain veneers. If you would like to learn more about direct bonding or any of our other cosmetic dentistry services, call to schedule your cosmetic dentistry consultation today.