Traditional dental restoratives, or fillings, may include porcelain or composite. The strength and durability of traditional dental materials continue to make them useful for situations where restored teeth must withstand extreme forces that result from chewing, such as in the back of the mouth.

Newer dental fillings include ceramic and plastic compounds that mimic the appearance of natural teeth. These compounds, often called composite resins, are usually used on the front teeth where a natural appearance is important, as well as on the back teeth depending on the location and extent of the tooth decay.

A glass ionomer filling is a different material that, although weaker than composite, is an excellent choice for certain situations because it releases fluoride into the tooth, strengthening it from the inside. It is sometimes chosen when teeth are difficult to isolate due to a very young, wiggly patient, or if the tooth has very weak enamel that is difficult to bond to ("hypoplastic" teeth).

What’s right for your child?

Several factors influence the performance, durability, longevity and expense of dental restorations, including:

  • The components used in the filling material
  • The amount of tooth structure remaining
  • Where and how the filling is placed
  • The chewing load that the tooth will have to bear
  • The length and number of visits needed to prepare and adjust the restored tooth

Before your child’s treatment begins, Dr. Meredith will discuss all options and help you choose the best  treatment for your child’s particular case.