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White Fillings

white fillings

At 'Dental on Seventh' we can safely replace your dark metallic amalgam fillings with non-metal, tooth- coloured resin ['bonded composite'], from a selection of appropriate varieties and shades, and we provide this option routinely when the indication arises.
We use the latest in technology to gently, quickly and effectively remove all old filling material. Tooth coloured [almost white] composite is bonded in, and then hardened properly, producing a natural and virtually invisible finish. With today's composite materials, 'white' tooth fillings offer an effective, long-term solution.
[However, for technical reasons, the procedures and materials we recommend differ slightly for use in either front and back teeth].
When the defects [cavities] are larger, and therefore when the tooth is much weaker, porcelain onlays or porcelain crowns or even gold crowns [in the very back] may be recommended as a preference, because these are generally stronger than regular composite fillings and they also can now be directly bonded to the teeth. When designed correctly these can provide superior support and strength.
Alternatively, a new process is available for internally toughening the composite material with poly-ethylene fibre laminated within the composite, and this can be an affordable long-term solution even for back teeth, in selected cases.

Biomimetic Dentistry

What is Biomimetic Dentistry?

‘Biomimetic’ means to copy or mimic nature.


Biomimetic dentistry, which is quite a new concept, is a type of tooth-conserving dentistry which seeks to treat weak, fractured, or decayed teeth in a way that keeps them much stronger and seals them more reliably from bacterial invasion [tooth decay and pulpitis] than the commonly provided ‘filling’, whether bonded or not. In dentistry it has been reasonably common to experience structural failures of teeth or the restorations provided in them, even when bonded, which is disappointing for all concerned!- structural failures [fractures] are often accompanied by biological failures-[eg infection of the dentine= tooth decay or worse, of the pulp= pulpitis= toothache].
In enlightened dental practices around the world, Biomimetic Dentistry has practically eliminated cutting teeth down for crowns and has reduced the incidence of root canal therapies.
Unsurprisingly, patients are happier to both have less damaging preparations and to spend much less [in comparison with crowns or onlays], though the cost is certainly a little more than for a conventional composite [tooth coloured resin] or amalgam ‘filling’ as explained below.
Our highly bonded and low-stressed adhesive restorations are termed biomimetic ("life-like") because they are designed to permit flexure, like a natural tooth. The restorations are connected to the tooth side to side, front to back, and top to bottom. They are bonded and aim to stay bonded for very long periods of time, mostly because of the way the bonding process is uniquely managed.
Nature is our ideal model.
We have studied the natural properties of sound teeth in function, so that when there is a need to make a repair [resulting from any kind of damage], we can better integrate our chosen restorative materials within the tooth so that the whole structure can withstand chewing pressures in the longer term, most particularly in the back teeth where potentially destructive forces are often very high.
The current biomimetic techniques that are being taught to those practitioners interested in moving toward a revolutionary new age of restorative dentistry are supported by recently-released scientific evidence.
Improper selection of materials can lead to undesirable results–even catastrophic failures. Some of these treatment failures can actually be traced back to ‘over-engineering’ of either the tooth preparation or of the materials themselves. There exists an ever increasing array of synthetic dental materials that are stronger, stiffer and seemingly more attractive for dentists to use, but it is not a simple matter to select from them.
We need to recognize that teeth move and bend in response to force, and the resultant natural deformation must be accounted for while ‘re-making the tooth’. [Never is this as true as when restoring dental implants, which are themselves completely rigid], with the potential to damage the teeth that they rub against.
We have not previously had the knowledge or the technology to incorporate materials that flex and move like natural teeth. We now know that we need to produce a well- integrated structure.
With ‘traditional’ dentistry we have often had to resort to shaping away considerable amounts of healthy tooth structure in order to accommodate a new restoration. In other words, we have sometimes had to destroy in order to create.
Biomimetic researchers and trained professionals have studied the dental scientific literature and have begun to implement the use of carefully selected techniques and materials with a view to getting away from destructive processes as far as and as often as possible.
Now we are able to unite weakened sections within the tooth and, in many cases even reconstruct missing parts of the tooth reliably without removing significant volumes of precious tooth structure as a matter of course.
Careful management of the bonding process is one key. The other key is to provide a base layer that provides significant resistance to crack-propagation, both within the restoration and within the tooth. This is very important, since we are experiencing more cracked teeth as we age.
Bonding of a similar kind to that used in biomimetic dentistry has been used in Dentistry for quite some time, and often successfully, but success over the longer term has not always been assured particularly where the restorations have needed to be large. Bonding systems have been constantly evolving, particularly over the past 10 years, and they have reached a point where they are at last reliable if used correctly! [overcoming the hurdle of bonding to a fundamentally wet surface has been the problem].
Inherent within the philosophy of Biomimetic Dentistry is the concept "less dentistry is better dentistry", or, better said: "There is no dentistry like no dentistry."
Just as non-invasive and non-surgical dental treatments [such as hygiene instruction followed by meticulous application of what is taught at home] can prevent or control periodontal problems and tooth infections, in many cases much of the amputation of tooth structure associated with crown preparation can be eliminated, [and most particularly this applies to root-canal treated back teeth with the associated ‘traditional’ need for pins, posts, slots, grooves and other non-adhesive retention features].
That is to say, Biomimetic dentistry is inherently ‘conservative!’ [‘conservative’ does not mean ‘old fashioned’ in the popular sense!].
Every intervention within a tooth carries an inherent risk that something adverse will happen- It therefore follows that the least invasive and least destructive dental intervention will generally be associated with fewer serious complications, regardless of any other benefits.
Maybe you don’t ‘need a crown’ after all!

Patient Testimonials:

The best and cheapest dentistry is when the right thing is done extremely well the first time. And it lasts. A friend recommended a biomimetic dentist when I was told I needed a crown. One visit, half the cost and no discomfort! My former dentist is now my FORMER dentist!

If you would like to arrange your initial consultation or if you wish to understand more about 'white' tooth fillings and/or our general dentistry services please Contact Us.

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