Today, there are many different types of dental fillings. Instead of amalgam that was common in the past, we now use tissue-saving tooth fillings that do not contain mercury.
If the tooth has been attacked by caries, a hole will eventually appear. If the hole is of a certain size, we put in a filling to protect the tooth.
A hole can become so large that it weakens the tooth. Then you should have a filling added. The filling restores the shape and function of the tooth in addition to preventing the hole from becoming even larger.
Amalgam was for a long time the most common filling material, but in 2008 amalgam was banned in Norway. The reason was both environmental considerations and possible health damage as a result of the mercury in the amalgam.
Today we can choose between several types of fillings. The most common are:
- Plastic and composite filling
- Glass ionomer
- Porcelain filling
- Gold filling
Composite is the most common filling. The tooth-colored plastic material contains small porcelain grains which improve the properties of the plastic. In addition, it provides increased durability. Since porcelain is available in many color variants, we find a color shade that is very close to your natural tooth color. This means that the filling is barely visible.
Which filling is best?
Glass ionomers are a type of cement that contains some fluoride that protects against new holes. Since it is not as strong as most other fillings, it is usually used in small holes where it is exposed to little wear and pressure.
Porcelain fillings are often used where there is major damage to the teeth so that a plastic filling is not as favorable. The porcelain filling is made by a dental technician and attached to the tooth with cement that is plastic-based.
Gold fillings are not so common nowadays, but they are still used. A gold filling is very durable. The filling is cast by a dental technician and then glued to the tooth using cement. Since gold is both tough and pliable, it is especially beneficial filling if you grind your teeth.
Sometimes the filling loosens and falls out. It can cause sharp edges and icing in the teeth, especially with temperature changes (hot / cold foods and drinks) and with chewing. The result may be that you have to get a root canal due to inflammation of the nerve.
If you have lost a filling, it is important that you contact us as soon as possible, so you can avoid inflammation and root filling.
Pain and toothache after filling
Once you have received a filling, it should not hurt afterwards. If it still hurts to chew or you have a toothache after you have had a dental filling, you must contact us as soon as possible. The pain may be due to the nerves being higher in the tooth than usual or the filling being particularly deep.
How to avoid tooth filling
The best thing you can do to avoid fillings is to reduce the risk of cavities. Good oral hygiene means, among other things, that you must
- Brush your teeth thoroughly morning and evening
- floss, toothpick or middle brush every day
- Use a good toothbrush
- brush your teeth properly
- if necessary, use a mouthwash containing fluoride
Support for dental filling
All children in Norway receive free dental treatment from the public sector. Adults must initially pay for themselves, but there are exceptions. It is the dentist or dental nurse who assesses whether you fall under any of the exceptions and thus is entitled to support from Helfo.
Sometimes we add a temporary filling, for example by root filling. This is because the treatment takes a few days, and the filling protects the tooth during the treatment period. A temporary filling does not sit as well as a permanent one, so it happens that it falls out. Then it is important that you contact us so we can insert a new temporary filling. It's done quickly, just a few minutes later it's in place!
Do you have questions about dental fillings?
Contact us for a non-committal chat!