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The Different Types of Fillings

If you’ve had a cavity, you’ve likely had a filling or are in need of one. Dealing with cavities involves removing the part of the tooth that has decayed and then filling in that space with a dental filling. Fillings can also be used to fix broken teeth or cracks in teeth. While fillings used to be made from various substances, today there are a few basic types of fillings.


When you think of gold fillings, you may think of pirates. Gold isn’t used for fillings as often as it once was because it is costly, but you may be able to request it if you really want a gold filling. There are some downsides to using gold, including extra office visits to have it placed and the fact that it can cause pain if it’s placed near certain other types of fillings.

Silver Amalgam Fillings

Silver is a very durable type of material, and it’s strong. It’s fairly affordable, too, but it will definitely stand out. Silver fillings also require more space, which means some of the healthy parts of the tooth may actually have to be removed so there’s enough space. Silver amalgam can also actually cause cracks in some teeth because it tends to contract and expand more often than other types of materials.


Composite fillings are designed to closely resemble the coloring of your own teeth, so they’re often almost invisible. They chemically bond to your teeth, too, which helps them support your teeth. On the downside, they aren’t as durable as silver amalgam fillings, so you may have to have them replaced more often. They are also more costly than amalgam fillings.

Ceramic Fillings

Ceramic or porcelain fillings don’t stain as often, but they are durable. You’ll be able to go for upwards of 15 years before they need replacing. That’s about equal to silver amalgam fillings. On the downside, ceramic fillings are very costly. If you’re in need of a filling, come talk to the experts at James R. Anderson, DDS. We will be able to help you select the best type of filling for your teeth.

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