Most people have fillings of one sort or another in their mouths. Nowadays fillings are not only functional, but can be natural looking as well. Many people don’t want silver fillings that show when they laugh or smile because they are more conscious about the way they look.
Amalgam fillings were used universally few decades ago. There is still ongoing debate about the mercury content and the effects both on individual health and environment. As a profession the aim is to have mercury free dentistry when possible.
White fillings have always been considered less long lasting than silver amalgam fillings. But there are now new materials available with properties comparable to silver amalgam, and these are proving to be very successful. The life expectancy of a white filling can depend greatly on where it is in your mouth and how heavily your teeth come together when you bite. Your dentist can advise you on the life expectancy of your fillings.
Most dental practices offer white fillings as a normal part of the treatment they give you. However, white fillings are classed as a ‘cosmetic’ treatment, and you can therefore only have them if you pay for them. The National Health Service will not usually allow white fillings on the biting surfaces of back teeth. However, this does not apply to the sides of back teeth or to any front teeth.
Because many white fillings are only available privately, costs can vary based on the complexity of the filling. Costs usually depend on the size and type of white filling used. Costs may also vary from region to region. As a guide, white fillings start from around £50 each, but your dentist will be able to give you an idea of the cost before you agree to treatment.