Composite fillings offer a natural looking alternative to more obvious metal amalgam fillings and can even be used to reshape disfigured teeth.

A composite resin is a tooth-coloured plastic mixture filled with glass. Suitable for either the front or back teeth, it is not only an attractive choice, but also supports the remaining structure of a damaged tooth to help prevent further breakage and sensitivity to temperature.

What does treatment involve?

Placing composite fillings is a slightly more involved process than normal fillings so treatment may take a little longer.

Firstly, the decay or old amalgam filling is removed and the area cleaned, then the composite resin is applied in layers. A special light is used to harden each layer and the resin is then expertly shaped to fit the tooth, followed by polishing to prevent staining.

What are the advantages?

Composite fillings have far more aesthetic appeal than amalgam fillings and though traditionally considered less durable, they are now made from hardwearing materials and offer a long lasting option. Their life expectancy will, however, depend on the depth of the cavity to be filled and its position in the mouth. Your dentist is best positioned to advise you.