A damaged or decaying tooth is never a fun affliction to deal with, and having your damaged tooth or teeth repaired with fillings as promptly as possible is vital to the continued health of the damaged tooth, as well as your oral health as a whole. In years gone by, this meant having your tooth filled with durable but unsightly metal-based amalgams, but modern dental techniques offer the dental patient a range of materials with which to repair their damaged teeth.
One of the most desirable of these modern filling materials is porcelain, and for good reason. Made from the same, immensely durable ceramic materials as porcelain tooth veneers, porcelain fillings have a number of advantages over other potential filling materials:
When crafted properly by a reputable reconstructive dentist, porcelain fillings are incredibly durable, and a well-treated porcelain filling can last for several decades -- often longer than the natural tooth surrounding them. This makes them particularly desirable for reconstructing damaged teeth in children, who will have to live with the filling for many years to come, and dramatically reduces the likelihood that your damaged tooth will need retreating and refilling any time soon.
In addition to being durable, porcelain fillings are also immensely strong and can survive massive compressive and shearing forces without cracking or wearing away. Many patients who have suffered damaged teeth due to bruxism (tooth grinding) choose porcelain, to ensure that the reconstructed tooth does not suffer further damage if their bruxism should recur.
Porcelain fillings are made from chemically inert, non-toxic materials, so you can be assured that your new filling will not react adversely to particularly acidic or alkaline foods and drinks. The lack of toxic materials also stands them in stark contrast to traditional amalgam fillings, which contain metal compounds which may provoke allergic reactions in some patients if the metal compounds become damaged.
Indistinguishable from healthy enamel
One of the mos desirable advantages of porcelain fillings is their ability to mimic the look of real, healthy enamel remarkably closely, and a finished porcelain filling has the right colour and opacity to be invisible under all but the closest inspections. Even if your natural tooth enamel has been discoloured by staining or age, porcelain fillings are the way to go, as the material can be chemically tinted before insertion to closely resemble whatever shade your natural teeth may possess.
Although unfinished porcelain fillings can be tinted to match the natural shade of your tooth enamel, they become non-porous and therefore very resistant to staining once properly inserted and allowed to cure. This gives them the edge on more common composite fillings which, while able to mimic the look of enamel when first inserted, can become badly stained and discoloured over time.
For more information, contact some local dentists.