Older fillings sometimes need to be replaced. Why? If the edge of the filling pulls away from the tooth, bacteria can grow underneath and eventually cause decay. At Wilmette Dental, old silver (amalgam) fillings are most often replaced with a tooth-colored material called composite resin.
Composites are fillings that are designed to match the color of your teeth. In addition, composite fillings once light activated (cured) are strongly bonded to the tooth - a process that helps the filling adhere to and strengthen the tooth.
Composites are often used to restore a decayed tooth, repair a fractured tooth or replace a broken silver mercury filling.
A composite can usually be prepared and placed in one visit. After the decayed part of the tooth or old mercury amalgam filling is carefully removed, a very mild acid solution is used to "etch" the tooth surface. The bonding agent (a very strong adhesive) is brushed onto the prepared tooth and layers of the tooth-colored composite are applied. Once the composite resin filling is placed and sculpted, the material is lightactivated with a special curing light, and finally polished.
Although tooth-colored composites are preferred for small to medium sized cavities, other restorative materials may be used depending on the extent and location of the decayed tooth. In cases where the cavity is large, or the tooth is used for heavy chewing, it may be necessary to use an alternative, such as a laboratory fabricated porcelain crown or overlay.
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Wilmette Dental, Ltd
344 Linden Ave.
Wilmette, IL 60091
Mon, Tue, Wed: 800am - 530pm
Thu: Noon - 800pm
Sat: 800am - 200pm (alternating)
Outside our regular business hours, please note our emergency care information.