Animated video of a basic filling                            

Because every case is different, Dr. Maxfield tailors his treatment to meet those individual needs.  When it comes to fillings, this means using different materials depending on strength, durability, longevity, and aesthetic. But in every case we always use the highest quality materials

Understanding Fillings

When we do fillings, we start by removing what is called “dental caries” or decay.  Bacterial indicators are used to help us check and re-check to be absolutely certain all the decay is gone before the tooth is sealed up by a filling. 

There are two types of fillings: silver amalgam fillings and white composite fillings.  Depending on your specific needs, Dr. Maxfield may recommend one over the other.  We do everything we can to customize your treatment to best suit your needs.

Amalgam Fillings

Amalgam fillings are the traditional silver fillings.  They are used less frequently now than in previous years, but still have their place in dentistry.  Silver amalgam fillings are quite durable.  In cases of inadequate hygiene, or where the tooth in question cannot be isolated and kept dry, amalgam may be the best option.  Because of its strength, amalgam may also be best in cases where there is a significant amount of force placed on the tooth in need of a filling.  

Amalgam fillings are considered the “least expensive alternative treatment” (LEAT) and are *usually covered by insurance.

*Not all policies are the same. Please check with your insurance to verify coverage.

Composite Fillings

Composite fillings are tooth-colored, so they are much more aesthetically pleasing.  As we move away from silver amalgam fillings, white composite fillings are becoming more and more common in dentistry.  Composite materials vary in strength, so in some cases it may not be possible to use them.  In other situations, a composite of higher quality than the standard may be required.  These are referred to by insurance as “upgraded” materials.  Standard composite materials *may be covered by insurance.  Material upgrades are not covered by insurance.

* Not all policies are the same.  Please check with your insurance to verify coverage.