A dental filling is usually a two-part process. It is first the removal of decaying tooth matter, caused by cavities, or alternately, the removal of damaged tooth matter caused by injury.
Thanks to technological advances, dentists and patients today have several choices when it comes to selecting materials to fill cavities. Among the choices are natural tooth-colored materials such as resin-based composite fillings and more traditional dental fillings such as those made of metal amalgam.
The advent of new materials for fillings has been beneficial for all dental patients. The traditional metal fillings need to be placed in sufficient bulk to make that material strong enough. Over time this leads to fractures in teeth with metal filling. The tooth colored restoration do not need to be placed in bulk resulting in more natural tooth surface being preserved and reducing the number of fractured teeth. Of course tooth colored filling materials are more aesthetically pleasing as well.