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White Fillings
White Fillings Rating 5 out of 5 based on 5 reviews

White fillings

Whilst most patients try to maintain a good oral hygiene and reduce their frequency of sugar intake, from time to time we may need a dental filling to restore a decayed or fractured tooth.

What causes tooth decay?

Tooth decay is caused by acid producing bacteria that are found in plaque producing acids after dietary sugar intake. These acids break down the enamel and dentine of teeth and can cause serious damage to the tooth.

Mouth saliva clears away bacterial produced acids from tooth tissue and has a protective effect but in patients who suffer from low saliva flow, this protection maybe reduced and the risk of tooth decay developing will be higher.

How do I prevent tooth decay?

In order to prevent tooth decay it’s advised to floss once daily, brush twice daily and limit dietary sugar intake to no more than 3 occasions per day. Sugar is found in many different foods such as fruits, processed foods, fizzy drinks and confectionery.

Those patients who are at high risk of developing tooth decay should also consider using a fluoride mouthwash or high fluoride toothpaste to reduce the risk of tooth decay developing.

How is tooth decay treated?

Early tooth decay also known as Enamel decay can be treated conservatively with daily flossing, brushing and fluoride mouthwash use with six monthly reviews by a dentist. Patients are usually not even aware of any symptoms if they have early enamel tooth decay.

Moderate tooth decay known as Dentine decay will need a filling as dentine decay will advance further unless it’s treated by a dentist. Moderate tooth decay can cause tooth sensitivity especially on drinking cold water.

Very advanced tooth decay that’s reached the nerve (pulp) of the tooth will need Root canal treatment in order to maintain the tooth without pain. Advanced tooth decay can cause pain and swelling and other symptoms such as pain on chewing.

What types of white fillings are available?

A white composite filling is the most commonly used type of filling these days as it looks very natural and bonds to the remaining tooth tissue very well. A composite white filling can be provided for patients in a single visit.

Porcelain or composite Inlays or Onlays are indirect white fillings that are more appropriate for larger cavities. An Inlay or Onlay take two visits to be made as a dental technician constructs them in the dental laboratory.

Dental filling Aftercare

In the immediate period after a filling is carried out, that side of the mouth maybe very numb and there is a risk of damage to the lip and tongue on that side by chewing on them during function. It’s advisable not to use the tongue and lip on that side of the mouth too much until the numbness has stopped.

Daily Flossing and brushing of the tooth and filling is essential to prevent bacterial accumulation around the filling margins which can lead to bacterial leakage.

Are there any risks to having white fillings?

There can be some tooth sensitivity after a deep white filling is carried out. This usually settles down within days or a few weeks after the filling is carried out.

Very rarely, if the sensitivity and pain persists due to having a very deep filling, then root canal treatment may become necessary.

In time white fillings can stain, debond, chip or fracture. Occasionally if the filling is very large it’s advisable to have a dental crown instead of a filling to reduce the risk of tooth fracture or filling fracture.

What is the difference between white & silver fillings?

White fillings bond to the tooth tissue far better than silver fillings and look much more natural and more closely resemble tooth enamel. As white fillings bond to tooth tissue very well, this has some protective effect against further tooth wall fracture. However metallic silver fillings are stronger than resin white composite resin fillings and have a longer average lifespan.

Silver amalgam fillings contain mercury and the use of mercury in silver fillings has raised some controversy over the years within the dental profession. Although the health risks of mercury within fillings, is as yet unproven, some patients prefer not to have any silver fillings in case health risks come to light in future.

White fillings are more technically demanding than silver fillings to do and require more surgery time and hence usually cost more than silver fillings.

How long do white fillings last?

With good aftercare and maintenance white fillings should last for many years. Studies show that the average lifespan of a white composite filling is around 3-5 years. Studies show that a composite or porcelain inlay or onlay last on average from 5-10 years.

Patients can increase the lifespan of their fillings by brushing and flossing daily, reducing the frequency of dietary sugar intake and seeing their dentists every 6 months so that their fillings can be closely monitored.


Pearl Dental Clinic is open 7 days a week from 9am to 10pm. You can book an appointment by calling us on 0208 547 9997 or emailing us or booking an appointment online


Latest Patient Reviews

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    I have experienced fantastic customer care at Pearl Dental and would highly recommend this dental practice.

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    Always such a fantastic service from all staff, great advice given on visit, never pushy! I've never been so happy to attend the dentist! My best dental experience at this practice!

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    Incredible dentistry with amazing staff!!

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    Friendly staff, who remember you.

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    I am a nervous dental patient but was made to feel reasonably relaxed.

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    DR Ehsan is a very good dentist

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    Good customer service

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    My favourite part of Pearl Dental Clinic is my clinician, Dr Ehsan Esfahani. Dr Esfahani is very good at explaining my current status and my future treatment plan (Invisalign Full) he gives me great assurance and confidence that the outcome of my treatment will be as promised in my first consultation - Dr Esfahani is reluctant to make promises that he knows cannot be delivered. In addition to his excellent dentistry knowledge and professional manner Dr Esfahani is a genuinely nice person who is very welcoming, relaxing and a pleasure to have as my dentist. I should also thank Dr Esfahani's assistant and the gentleman on the front desk (Wednesday nights) who are both incredibly polite and helpful during every visit to the practice.

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    Value for money

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    Great treatment and service provided by the Doctors/Assistants, friendliness of the reception staff and convenient opening hours and flexibility.

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    Patience and caring attitude

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    Patience and friendliness

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    Extended opening hours; dentist available on weekends which is great for working people like myself. Very friendly, helpful and approachable staff. Easy to book/alter appointments. Very professional service. Reasonable prices compared to other dental practises. Would highly recommend.

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    dr mohsen is amazing n really nice mashaAllah

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    Your expertise and good customer service

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    Efficient friendly organised excellent opening hours and value for money

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    Friendly staff

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    The staff are very nice, its also clean. I used to have a fear or dental work but I'm slowly getting better as the staff here don't put pressure on you or make you feel bad about your fears, your always just encouraged to try your best. They alway apriciate that you are trying your best.

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    Good deal with Invisalign. Very good opening hours. Finance.

  • Pearl Dental Clinic

    Very efficient