Reva Dental Blog

Category Archives: White Fillings

Types of Dental Fillings and Treatment Procedure

What is a Filling and When are they Used?

A filling is a type of restorative dental treatment used to repair minimal to moderate tooth fractures, tooth decay or otherwise damaged surfaces of the teeth. Dental filling materials, which include composite, porcelain and silver amalgam, may also be used to even out tooth surfaces for better biting or chewing.

Enamel loss is a common component of tooth decay, and may result in discomfort and tooth sensitivity In many cases, sensitivity caused by enamel loss will be significantly improved or completely eliminated once an appropriate dental filling material is placed. But in some cases, depending on the extent of tooth decay or damage, the affected tooth may require additional or alternative procedures, including:

Dental Crowns: Teeth requiring more support than offered by a traditional filling may require a dental crown.

Root Canal Treatment: Infected, abscessed or nerve damaged teeth may require a root canal procedure.

Dental Implants and Dental Bridges: Irreparable tooth damage requiring tooth extraction may require an implant or bridge.

Dental Fillings Consultation and Treatment Planning

At Reva Dental, one of the more common oral health issues discovered during scheduled cleanings is decay. Your dentist will examine suspect teeth using a dental probe and caries detecting liquid, as well as taking an X-ray to determine the extent and exact location of the cavity and decay.

Once it is determined that a filling is needed, your dentist will advise you of your options for filling and sealing the cavity to prevent further decay and damage to the tooth. Based on your medical history, location of the cavity, aesthetic needs, biting force, durability, cost, number of visits necessary and your preference, your dentist will decide which filling option is best for you. These options include direct composite bonding (white filling), amalgam (silver filling), gold or porcelain inlays/onlays created by our dental laboratory.

Depending on what your best option is, your dentist will usually be able to complete your filling immediately. In preparation for treatment, the area surrounding the affected tooth will be anesthetised (numbed) using a local anesthetic.

Dental Fillings: The Procedure

The dentist begins the dental filling procedure by preparing the tooth and necessary surrounding areas in order to restore the damaged area. The decay or damage is removed with a dental hand-piece, and the area is cleansed to remove bacteria or debris before the restoration is completed.

The first step in performing a composite filling procedure involves isolation of the tooth. Tooth isolation is critical in a composite restoration, because it prevents moisture from interfering with the bonding process. The bonding procedure requires the placement of various adhesives followed by the composite material, which is then hardened with a special bonding light. The completed composite restoration is both functional and natural looking.

Dental Fillings Recovery and Aftercare

After the cavity has been filled, your dentist will discuss steps you can take to prevent decay from forming under or around the filling, or in other teeth. Brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and flossing with dental floss or an inter-dental brush once a day is advised. Keep appointments with your dentist for routine check-ups and teeth cleanings. Depending on your risk for caries, your dentist also may suggest sealants that can be placed over your molars to prevent the build-up of plaque and decay, as well as the use of fluoride mouth rinses as an additional preventive measure.

Also, since diet and nutrition affect oral health, it will be important to maintain a Balanced Diet and limit your intake of sugary foods and drinks, and snacks between meals.

Dental Filling Costs

Composite fillings are usually a bit more expensive than traditional amalgam fillings because they require a more sophisticated process, more expensive materials and additional office equipment. However composite materials are popular as they offer an aesthetic alternative to traditional amalgam materials. As such, people who have previously received amalgam fillings often return to their dentist to have them replaced with composite fillings.

The cost of your filling will depend on the number of tooth surfaces that need filling. For example, one tooth may have only one surface affected by decay or damage, while another tooth may have one or all surfaces affected by decay or damage.

On average, amalgam fillings are expected to last approximately 12 years, while composite fillings are expected to last five to seven years. This of course is dependent on your oral hygiene routine and and your commitment to continued dental visits.

You can see a full list of our treatment fees here.

Call Reva Dental on 056 7763786 to schedule your appointment. You may be eligible for a free check-up; see

Difference between White Fillings and Amalgam Fillings

Dental technology has advanced enormously over the past two decades, and today there is a large range of choices, for patients and dentists alike, when it comes to filling cavities.

Reva Dental offer a choice of materials for fillings: resin-based composites, which we see as ‘white’ fillings, and dental amalgam, a more traditional filling, silver in colour and comprised of a mixture of metals.

White Fillings

Resin Composites mimic the appearance of natural teeth, and are made of ceramic and plastic compounds. Used in front teeth for years, technology has improved the strength of these composites enough to be used in the back teeth, where they’re subject to heavy-duty grinding and chewing.

The obvious advantage of white fillings is that they are more aesthetically pleasing when visible in the mouth, as there is minimal contrast between the filling material and the tooth itself.

When the cosmetic effect is important, white resin composite fillings are often used on the six teeth at the front of the mouth (incisors and cuspids), and on the outward-facing surface of the next two teeth (bicuspids). The patient has a choice for molars; they may choose the material they prefer.

Composite fillings can be trickier to place, as the tooth must be completely dried out in preparation for placement, and the filling has to ‘cure’. They are also more expensive than amalgam fillings.

Amalgam Fillings

Amalgam is the more recognisable ‘silver’ filling, and dental amalgam is made up of a mixture of metals including tin, silver and copper.

Dental amalgams are highly durable and have been favoured over resin for use in the molars, where they get a lot of wear. They’re also used for cavities that go below the gum line, and are easier to place in areas that are hard for the dentist to dry out for the procedure.

Amalgam is considered a highly reliable, very strong, low-maintenance option for fillings, and generally has a longer life than resin. It’s a stronger choice of material for back teeth; easy for dentists to manipulate and is more cost-effective, although less aesthetically pleasing, than resin composite fillings.

Choice of Filling

The choice is ultimately that of the patient, and your dentist at Reva Dental will advise you on the nature and longevity of the filling. The size, nature and location of the cavity will be another deciding factor, and your dentist will discuss the options with you, explaining the kind of pressure your filling will endure and the details of the cavity-filling procedure itself.

Call Reva Dental on 056 776 3786 to schedule your appointment. You may be eligible for a free check-up; see

Best Celebrity Smile Makeovers

The A-List in Hollywood is filled with beautiful people – and the ‘Hollywood smile’ is famous around the world as an essential facet of red carpet beauty. If you look through magazines you will see regular reference to the best celebrity smile makeovers, showing amazing cosmetic dental work. However while many celebrities have had extensive dental work, many appearing in those lists have only had minor changes made to their teeth.

The important thing to remember is that a good dentist will know what will work: and that in many cases a small change can make a BIG difference. Our dental professionals here at Crescent Dental have taken a look at some well-known celebs to see what kind of work may have transformed their smiles!


One of the best examples of a celebrity smile makeover is Tom Cruise. In his early career he didn’t exactly have the movie star smile and  by his own admission this came between him and certain film roles. Tom suffered from overcrowding and his teeth were quite badly misaligned. Some basic cleaning procedures, a few veneers and a few months of invisible braces ensure a now bright happy and confident smile. If you suffer from overcrowding, 6 month braces are a fantastic and time-effective option that you should consider to improve your smile.

zacZacEfron is another celeb who has had some wonderful results with cosmetic dentistry. As a teenager he had a gap between his two front teeth, now they are perfectly aligned. He had Invisible braces which helped to pull his teeth together and give him a more ‘adult’ smile. Tooth whitening was also used to help brighten up Zac’s new smile.



victoriaVictoria Beckham had a fantastic celebrity smile makeover. Her teeth were crooked and she had a gap at the front of her teeth. Victoria looks like she has had some porcelain veneers on her front smile line and some tooth whitening sessions to brighten up her smile.



georgeGeorge Clooney has always been a big hit with the ladies but his smile was far from perfect many moons ago! A chronic teeth grinding habit (bruxism) left George with tiny stubs for teeth. Porcelain veneers were used to lengthen the teeth that Clooney had ground down and gum-lasering was carried out to expose more of his natural teeth.



cherylCheryl Cole had quite crooked teeth and she had pointed incisors that were quite fang-like. Her teeth were straightened and the ‘fangs’ were reshaped to give her a more beautiful smile. Whitening was also carried out on her stained teeth and she now has some dazzling white porcelain veneers to give her that perfect Hollywood smile.

For all of the non-celebs among us, teeth cleaning and whitening can dramatically change your smile. Techniques like cosmetic bonding and 6 month braces can really change your whole looks and the costs are a lower than you might expect nowadays as cosmetic dentistry is becoming more common. Talking to a good dentist will help you find the most effective way of getting that perfect smile you are looking for!