What are fillings?
A filling replaces part of a tooth that has been lost because of decay or
through accidental damage. ‘Silver’ fillings are made of dental amalgam - a
mixture of mercury with other metals, including silver, tin and copper. You
may hear the dentist talk about ‘composite’ and ‘glass ionomer’ - these are
different types of tooth coloured filling material.
What fillings are available?
Amalgam - These traditional silver-coloured fillings are made from a
combination of metals including silver, tin and copper. Amalgam is very
hard-wearing, so it’s ideal for fillings in your back teeth. Amalgam fillings can
last for 20 to 40 years, as long you take good care of your teeth.
Composite - Composite fillings are what people often call ‘white fillings’, but actually they can be
matched closely to the colour of your teeth. They look natural, so they’re great if your filling will be visible when you smile, laugh or talk.
Tips to avoid fillings
Avoiding/cutting down and managing your intake of sugary or acidic foods and drinks. If you sip a sugary drink throughout the day, for example, your teeth are exposed to the sugar for longer, and your mouth doesn’t have chance to recover
Seeing your dentist and dental hygienist regularly
Cleaning between your teeth before brushing
Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes
Using the right toothpaste; your dentist or dental hygienist can advise you on what’s best for you
Changing your toothbrush (or electric toothbrush head) at least once every three months