Tooth filling: features of modern fillings

Aesthetic and functional restoration of a decayed tooth is a task that dentists are working on. The most famous and common option is dental fillings in dentistry. This method allows you to repair the tooth, while maintaining its natural shape, shade, functionality. In addition, modern fillings extend the life of the teeth, provide them with additional protection against caries, and reduce the sensitivity of the enamel.

In this article, we will tell you about the main types of filling materials, features and advantages of filling, its differences from other types of restoration.

Tooth decay: causes

There are external and internal factors that can harm the teeth and cause their destruction.

External causes are divided into 4 groups:

  • 1
    Mechanical – damage due to impact, biting through hard objects (walnut shells, bones), teeth opening caps on bottles.
  • 2
    Thermal – the use of excessively hot or cold foods (dishes fresh from the fire, frozen ice, etc.), as well as contrasting temperatures (for example, hot coffee with ice cream).
  • 3
    Chemical – exposure to alkalis and acids found in some fruits, toothpaste, teeth whitening preparations, etc.
  • 4
    Poor hygiene – irregular or insufficiently thorough cleaning of teeth, advanced dental diseases (inflammation of the gums, caries).

Internal causes of tooth decay:

  • violation of metabolic processes in the body;
  • deficiency of minerals, vitamins associated with diseases, metabolic disorders, unbalanced diet;
  • hormonal changes (puberty, pregnancy, endocrine diseases);
  • decreased immunity, the ability to regenerate tissues due to internal pathological processes, after undergoing chemical / radiation therapy;
  • diseases of the ENT organs, organs of the digestive system.

As a result of the destruction of enamel, unaesthetic stains appear on the teeth, the sensitivity of the teeth to irritants (taste, temperature) increases, the risk of caries and tooth tissue destruction increases. Depending on the nature and extent of tooth decay, dentistry uses different reconstructive technologies, in particular, filling. Next, we will figure out in which cases filling is used, as a method of functional and aesthetic tooth restoration.

Application of fillings

Filling is a direct restoration of teeth, which is carried out directly in the oral cavity using special materials (composites). This type of restoration implies the restoration of the integrity, functionality and aesthetics of the crown part of the tooth. The task of the doctor in the process of filling is to achieve the maximum correspondence of the restored tooth to its natural form while preserving the natural relief.

A filling on a destroyed tooth is placed with the following indications:

  • damage to the enamel;
  • medium and deep caries;
  • mechanical damage, provided that the trauma did not affect the tooth root (the wall of the tooth broke, the enamel was chipped).

How is a tooth filled?

  • 1
    The doctor conducts an examination and, if necessary, prescribes additional X-ray diagnostics in order to determine the extent and nature of the destruction of tooth tissues.
  • 2
    If necessary, the patient is given an injection of a local anesthetic drug.
  • 3
    Using a drill, the specialist removes damaged tissue and prepares the tooth surface (cavity) for filling.
  • 4
    Next, etching and drying is carried out before introducing the filling material.
  • 5
  • 6
    Final processing (giving the filling a shape that repeats the natural shape of the tooth, as well as smoothness).

It is also possible to place a filling on a depulpated tooth. In this case, the treatment is carried out in 2 stages, and the restoration (permanent filling) is carried out during the second visit to the clinic with a positive result of endodontic treatment.

What are fillings made of?

The efficiency and aesthetics of filling today is the result of the development of innovative materials for the manufacture of fillings.

Depending on the nature and extent of tooth decay, aesthetic, strength and other requirements, dentistry uses:

  • glass ionomer cements;
  • composite materials;
  • compomers (a combination of polymers and glass ionomers).

Glass ionomers

These are high-strength, wear-resistant materials with high adhesion to the tooth tissues. They do not spoil the enamel and have excellent marginal adhesion, protect teeth from caries. They are not used in permanent filling due to insufficient strength.

Scope of application of glass ionomers:

  • filling of milk teeth;
  • restoration of the stump under the crown.

Phosphate cements are used for temporary filling.

Composite fillings

The most popular material for aesthetic dental restoration is light-curing composites, which are multi-component systems consisting of an organic matrix, an inorganic filler and a binder. After polymerization under a special lamp, shaping and polishing, the composite restoration becomes visually indistinguishable from the healthy teeth next to it – it has the same shade, shine and even transparency as in living enamel. In terms of structure and strength, the filling is also not inferior to the tissues of the tooth.


The combination of materials that differ in their characteristics provides compomers with unique properties. The material also has its own polymerization characteristics.

Compomers are cured in 2 stages:

  • 1
    Under the influence of UV.
  • 2
    When interacting with a moist environment in the oral cavity.

Packable compomers are used in dental restoration with low aesthetic requirements, and flowable ones are used for filling in hard-to-reach areas of the dentition.

Benefits of direct restoration

In dentistry, as in any branch of medicine, it is of great importance to find innovative, more and more effective ways of working that would allow solving any, even the most complex and atypical problems. Direct restorations in modern dentistry, thanks to the use of new highly aesthetic and durable materials, have many advantages. But at the same time, they are not without drawbacks.

The advantages of filling:

  • minimal intervention, the ability to keep the tooth alive, extend its service life;
  • fast tooth restoration (restoration is carried out directly in the patient’s mouth during one visit to the dentist);
  • safety, hypoallergenicity, aesthetics, excellent adhesion and strength of modern materials for direct restoration;
  • all processes of treatment and restoration of a tooth are controlled by one specialist, which eliminates errors in the transfer of information about the external characteristics of the restoration to a dental technician;
  • the ability to choose the shade of the material that perfectly matches the color of the patient’s natural teeth;
  • the quality of filling does not depend on the presence / absence of its own dental laboratory in the clinic, its equipment.

Even a large filling in a tooth can preserve its vitality, since filling the teeth preserves the gingival attachment, natural contact and metabolism between the tooth tissues and the oral fluid (saliva).


  • the probability of composite shrinkage over time;
  • less accurate repetition of occlusal surfaces than in the manufacture of crowns;
  • the risk of deterioration in the quality of the restoration due to errors / violations of technology – contact of the material with moisture, blood;
  • human factor – working with composite materials requires attention from the doctor, quick and accurate actions.

To correctly assess the condition of the patient’s tooth and determine the best option for its restoration, only an experienced doctor can choose the best material. And from the point of view of a specialist, a good restoration is, first of all, a high-quality restoration, made in compliance with technologies and allowing to extend the life cycle of a tooth for many more years.

How much does a good filling cost?

In the formation of the cost of direct restoration, various factors are taken into account:

  • the purpose of the seal;
  • type of material, its price;
  • scope of work;
  • the complexity of the work.

Of course, the price depends on the quality of the filling material, but to think that the cost of the filling itself serves as a guarantee of the quality of the restoration is a big mistake. Even the best and most expensive filling will not last long if it was done unprofessionally. Mainly, the quality and durability of the installed filling depends on the experience, skill and responsibility of the dentist, so the patient needs to pay attention not to the cost of dental services, but to the choice of a clinic, a doctor.

Benefits of dental fillings at Amel Dental

A highly professional staff of specialists, high-quality materials from leading manufacturers known all over the world for their unique developments, modern high-tech equipment of dental offices are the main components of the work of the Amel Dental clinic, which allow us to provide patients with services at the level of world standards.

In addition, Amel Dental unites all areas of modern dentistry and offers a full range of dental services – from accurate digital diagnostics to prosthetics. Thus, we have the resources to provide full-fledged qualified care to patients with any diseases, pathologies of teeth and gums.