Dental Fillings :

Tooth Decay Information


CLICK HERE : to watch a Video on Silver Fillings

CLICK HERE : to watch a Video on White Fillings

CLICK HERE : to watch a Video on Cavities 


White Fillings : 

White fillings provide good durability and resistance to fracture, in small-to-mid size cavities.  They can be used on either front or back teeth.  They are a great choice for people who prefer their fillings look more natural.  At our office, white fillings are always placed in the front ( anterior ) 12 teeth unless the tooth is so bad it needs a porcelain crown.  We never place a silver filling in a front tooth unless requested by the patient.  White fillings are not designed to provide strength in back teeth which have large fractures or decay (in these cases usually a porcelain crown or silver filling is placed).

White fillings cost more than silver fillings, take much more time to place, and quite often are not covered fully by insurance plans.  Some insurance plans consider the placement of white fillings in back teeth "Cosmetic" and will make the patient pay a considerably larger copay to the dentist.  All insurance companies cover the placement of white fillings in front teeth with no cosmetic "up-charge".  No dental filling lasts forever.  Studies do show that composite fillings can be less durable, and need to be replaced more often than silver fillings.  It takes longer to place a white filling than it does a silver filling.  That’s because white fillings require the tooth be kept very dry while the cavity is being filled.  White fillings will absorb stains and discolor over time, thus replacement is needed more often than silver fillings.


Silver Fillings :

Silver fillings are made from a combination of metals.  Sometimes described as dental amalgam, they have been used by dentists for more than 150 years because they lasts a long time and are the least expensive filling material available.

Because of their durability, silver fillings are the best choice for large cavities or those that occur in the back teeth where a lot of force is needed to chew.  Amalgam hardens quickly so it is useful in areas that are difficult to keep dry during placement, such as below the gum line. 


Dental Fillings.  This website is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for Dental or Medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  The information on this website does not create a patient-dentist relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.  By visiting this site you agree to all its terms and conditions, which may from time to time be changed or supplemented by Dr. James J. Herget listed in the Disclaimer.  If you do not agree to these terms and conditions, you should not enter this site.