Can a Permanent Tooth Filling Last for a Lifetime?

Can a Permanent Tooth Filling Last for a Lifetime?

Jan 11, 2023

The enamel is the strongest portion of your tooth and is designed to protect the inner parts. However, it can be damaged due to decay, dental trauma, or wearing out. When this happens, it is crucial to visit a dentist near you for treatment. Read on to learn about dental fillings in Petaluma, CA, and how they restore the tooth’s shape and function.

What Are Dental Fillings?

They are artificial substances that fill in gaps or holes in the enamel of decayed or damaged teeth. Dental fillings restore the shape and strength of teeth. They enable easier chewing and prevent further tooth deterioration and loss.

The dental fillings procedure is uncomplicated and pain-free. First, the dentist will administer anesthesia to numb the tooth and surrounding tissues. Next, they will remove any present decay and clean and dry the tooth. After that, the dentist will insert the tooth filling on the affected part of the tooth. Finally, they will shape the filling and ensure your bite is okay.

There are various types of dental fillings, including:

  • White fillings- They are tooth-colored fillings made of composite resin. They are designed to resemble the tooth being repaired for a uniform appearance.
  • Silver fillings- They are also known as amalgams and contain silver alloy and mercury. These fillings are very durable compared to other filling types.
  • Ceramic filings- They are tooth-like fillings made of porcelain. Ceramic fillings are stain and abrasion-resistant. They are used on large cavities.
  • Glass ionomer fillings are a tooth-colored mixture of glass and acrylic used for small filings or on kids’ teeth. Glass ionomer fillings are also used in temporary tooth restorations.
  • Gold fillings- They contain a mixture of gold, copper, and other metal alloys. These are durable fillings used for crowns and partial dentures.

Benefits of White Fillings

  1. White fillings are versatile and have a variety of uses. These include repairing teeth damaged by grinding, decay, erosion, or trauma. They also seal teeth after a root canal procedure and replace silver fillings. The tooth-filling dentist can use white fillings to improve the shape, size, and shade of teeth.
  2. They are aesthetically pleasing since they are customized to resemble the exact shade of your teeth. This makes them ideal for restoring the front teeth visible when you smile. If your teeth are stained, the dentist can whiten them first. Then they will place a shade of filling that matches the whiter teeth.
  3. You can eat hard foods like nuts immediately after the white fillings procedure. This is impossible if you get silver fillings since they take longer to set. You must wait 24 hours before eating hard foods after getting silver fillings.
  4. White tooth fillings are strong and durable. They can handle constant chewing and grinding pressure on the front and back teeth.
  5. When placing white fillings, the dentist will remove less tooth structure than when placing other fillings. White fillings easily bond to the tooth structure.
  6. These fillings do not expand and contract like amalgam when you take cold or hot things. They have insulating properties that prevent them from thermal stress. Therefore, your teeth will not crack or weaken when you have white fillings like they would with amalgam fillings.

How Long Does a Permanent Tooth Filling Last?

Permanent tooth fillings can last around 5-20 years or a lifetime. Their durability is affected by eating habits, tooth-grinding or jaw-clenching, and oral hygiene. Dental trauma to the filled tooth or decay around the filling can reduce the longevity of fillings.

The filling material used also determines how long the restoration will last. Gold fillings are the most durable lasting up to 20 years. Amalgam and ceramic fillings can give you excellent service for approximately 15 years. Glass ionomer fillings are brittle and last for less than five years. Composite fillings are stronger and last for about seven years.

You can make your permanent tooth fillings last longer by:

  • Practicing excellent dental hygiene
  • Correcting habits such as nail biting, teeth grinding, and jaw clenching
  • Limiting sugary, acidic, and sticky snacks
  • Visiting a dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings

Are you considering getting dental fillings in Petaluma, CA? Then visit our dental experts at Petaluma Dental Group. We will restore your teeth with dental fillings that can last a lifetime.