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Updated by Southview Dental on Jul 27, 2017
Headline for What Types of Dental Filling are Available?
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What Types of Dental Filling are Available?

If your latest trip to the dentist came with the news that you need a filling, you’re not alone. Every day hundreds of thousands of people are sat in dentist’s chairs having them – from big ones to small ones and everything in between.

Back in the day, you may have only come across amalgam fillings, but nowadays there are lots more options available.


Amalgam fillings

Amalgam fillings

These have been around for approximately 150 years and are made up of a mixture of metals. They usually contain 50 per cent mercury with a mixture of other metals, such as tin, copper, silver or zinc. These are the cheapest option, and usually last the longest.

The drawbacks of amalgam fillings are that due to their dark colour they are quite obvious when you open your mouth. Although the FDA has determined that the level of mercury in them is safe for people over the age of six, you might prefer to have a filling made out of something else.



A composite tooth filling is often made from powdered glass and acrylic resin. It is usually coloured to match the shade of the tooth and is much less visible. In a world where everyone wants a natural looking smile, these types of fillings are becoming much more popular.

Despite their advantages, these fillings can be less durable and need replacing more often. For this reason, this type of filling is usually suited to teeth that only experience a moderate amount of pressure when chewing.



Porcelain fillings are a type of indirect filling, which is where tooth decay is extensive and there is not enough healthy tooth structure to hold a filling in place. Porcelain fillings can be quite pricey but look like actual teeth and can help to maintain a natural looking smile.



Gold fillings are another type of indirect filling and can be one of the most durable and long-lasting filling options available. As you would expect, they are also the most expensive.


Resin or glass ionomer

These fillings are oven used to fill cavities in baby teeth, or in very small holes in adult teeth. When used on a permanent tooth, this type of filling is usually placed somewhere that’s not subject to extreme chewing action.
At Southview Dental Care, we offer a range of dental treatments, including fillings. To book in with our Kent based dental experts, please call: 01732 865021 or visit our website for further information.