Fillings are used to treat a cavity due to decay, and repair chipped or broken teeth caused by trauma or teeth grinding.
Traditionally, teeth are filled with silver-coloured amalgam. Highly aesthetic fillings are available in tooth-coloured resin (plastic) materials known as composite fillings, or as ceramic restorations.
Fillings can be classified as direct or indirect restorations.
Direct restorations are usually placed on smaller cavities and can be easily done in one visit. Common materials used are amalgam and composite resin.
Indirect restorations require two visits and are chosen when the cavity is large and stronger restorations are needed. Common materials used are gold and ceramics.
Indirect restorations can now be made in a single visit. These aesthetic ceramic use digital technology to create highly accurate and beautiful restorations.
CEREC is a unique CAD (computer aided design) CAM (computer aided milling) system for individual all-ceramic restorations in a single appointment.
It removes the need for a second appointment and increases the patient’s comfort as a traditional impression of the teeth is no longer needed. Instead, a scanner is used to capture photographic images of the cavity and these images are sent to a computer.