Composite resin is a filling material designed for aesthetic dental restorations. Matching the shade of your natural teeth, composite resin is often used for filling dental cavities or for dental bonding front teeth.
Composite resin consists of glass or quartz filler added to a resin medium, which produces a tooth-colored restoration. The invention of composite resin offers a substitute to the amalgam dental fillings. This plastic and glass mixture contains no metal and can be shaped to resemble a real tooth.It is usually hard to tell that a tooth has even been filled!
- Composite fillings look natural
- Better for smaller fillings
- Preserves more tooth structure
For years, amalgam was the only option for filling teeth. Those who wanted natural-looking restorations had to opt for more expensive cosmetic treatments, such as a dental crown, inlay or onlay.
Although composite resin has only recently gained popularity, white fillings were originally introduced in the 60s.
The first composite fillings tended to wear down easily. It has taken years of development for scientists to develop the current composite resins now available.
How It Works
The procedure for placing a composite resin dental filling is a bit more complicated than it is for an amalgam filling:
- The dentist isolates the tooth from saliva to keep it dry.
- Any dental decay is removed.
- An etchant and bonding agent are placed, followed by the composite resin.
- A special light is used to harden each layer of composite resin material.
- After the tooth is filled, the composite resin is shaped to resemble a real tooth.
Placing composite resin restorations requires a little more time in the dental chair, but most patients are incredibly pleased with the results!