Fillings – General Information

Dental fillings

A dental filling is a form of restorative dental treatment that is used to correct tooth decay, fractures, or cracked or broken teeth. Patients with tooth decay or a minor fracture in the teeth will have difficulty chewing and may develop tooth sensitivity and pain due to loss of enamel. If the tooth is not repaired, jaw bone atrophy may occur. Usually, the dentist will use an x-ray to obtain precise information on the location and severity of the decay.

Dental fillings help even out the surface of the tooth, easing chewing and grinding.

If you have a cavity and it needs a filling, there are different kinds of fillings to do the job.

There are several different types of fillings that can be used to fill a cavity, but the final decision on which type of filling is placed in your mouth is yours alone.

How they are done

To fill a cavity, your dentist may first give you “freezing” (or local anesthetic), so you do not feel any pain. Your dentist then takes out all traces of decay, shapes the hole and fills it.

Most fillings are done in two ways:

  1. Direct Filling – These fillings go right into the cavity, after your dentist has cleaned out the decay.  They harden quickly. Most of the time, you will be able to have a direct filling put in place in one appointment.
  2. Indirect Filling – Examples of this type of filling are crowns (or caps) and inlays. They are custom made in a lab to fit your tooth. Your dentist cements the filling in place. Most indirect fillings take two or more appointments to complete.

Ceramic fillings are considered the standard in care because of their longevity relative to other tooth-coloured materials.

Remember, your dentist is interested in you and your oral health. If you are concerned about having any particular dental restorative materials placed in your teeth, talk to your dentist and be a partner in decisions about your oral health care.


Cliffcrest Dental

2995 Kingston Rd, Scarborough,
ON M1M 1P1, Canada