Modern Filling Materials for Teeth


Filling material for teeth is used to restore minor tooth decay and cover cracks, cavities that appear because of damage or due to caries.

Currently, dental doctors have a large selection of tooth filling materials in their practice, that are distinguished by their high durability, reliability and aesthetics. Due to their properties, they can provide a several important functions:

  • they are used to treat caries and protect against the subsequent spread;
  • reduce the sensitivity of tooth enamel;
  • prolong the life of natural teeth;
  • perform an aesthetic function;
  • positively influence the functional properties of the teeth.

What factors influence the choice of a dental filler? When you need to choose the most suitable option, you rely on several criteria. First of all, the degree of tooth decay is assessed, as well as the area of healthy tissue that will provide support for the filling. It also matters where the treatment is taking place. When you choose material to fill in teeth, you need to consider which part of the oral cavity will be treated: the chewing and anterior teeth require different degrees of strength. One ought to pay attention to the patient's susceptibility to certain components of the filling materials and exclude a possibility of allergies. In addition, aesthetic requirements are also important.

It’s important to remember that dental filling material must be completely safe for health, strong, have good tightness and match the color of healthy teeth as much as possible.

Materials for Filling Root Canals

Today there is a fairly wide selection of root canal filling material. They are all successfully used in dental medicine to a greater or lesser extent. Conventionally, such materials are divided into the following types:

  • plastic (hardening / non-hardening);
  • primary solid

Non-hardening pastes dissolve in the canal and don’t provide long-term and reliable filling of the hole, therefore, they should not be used for permanent use. However, they are quite effective as a temporary filling tool. Plastic hardening materials, or sealers, should have easy insertion, good adhesion to the canal sides, reliable pressurization of the root canal and its branches, as well as the absence of shrinkage after hardening.

The primary solid materials for root canal filling are fillers. They are used only in combination with plastic hardening pastes (sealers) and serve to fill the root canal cavity and increase a reliability. Their advantages include aesthetics and application for anterior teeth and long service life.

Root canal filler must meet the requirements: be resistant to chemical attack, retain its shape for a long time, have heat resistance, and also easily fill the gap, hardening in a short time. In addition, it should have the highest conformity with the natural tooth tissue to avoid irritation of the pulp and oral mucosa. Keep in mind that the root canal can be filled if there are no pain symptoms, swelling, and the canal is processed instrumentally and has no unpleasant odor.

Types of Dental Filling Materials

Considering the purpose, the fillings are divided into two categories: temporary and permanent. In the first case, less strong materials are used, designed for short service life, and are easily removed from the carious cavity. They are used to isolate a tooth with a medicine inside or when there is a risk of pulpitis. Temporary filling material is often called diagnostic in dentistry. This filling is an excellent sealant protecting the cavity from infection or food debris. The temporary fillings must be fast-curing, have a reliable degree of tightness, but at the same time be easy to install and remove. The main disadvantage is the lack of strength.

Permanent fillings, unlike temporal ones, are durable. The quality guarantee for the installation of such materials is given for several years. They have a different basis, composition and may be used at the initial stage of healing or when temporal filling is removed. The main goal when installing a filling is considered to be hermetic clogging of the tooth cavity and protection from pathogenic microbes. Another purpose of permanent fillings is considered to be an aesthetic function. Various types of cement are applied as a posterior composite filling, and photopolymers are utilized for anterior teeth, which are matched to the natural shade of other teeth.

Modern stomatology uses different types of materials for making permanent fillings. All of them differ in compound, strength, solidification rate and cost. The variety of fillings allows the doctor to match the material to the enamel color as accurately as possible, thereby returning the tooth to its original appearance.

The main dental composite types are presented in the form:

Amalgam has a combined composition in which there is an alloy of a metal with mercury. This material is quite strong and resistant, but also has toxicity. Аmalgam differs by corrosion resistance, good ductility, and high durability. Tooth filling cement is composed of phosphates and other components. They are affordable, reduce the risk of recurrent caries, and are easy to install and use. They are applied for posterior chewing teeth. Disadvantages of this material: they don’t adhere well to the sides, they wear off quickly, and have low strength. Plastic ones are characterized by high strength and durability, and also have an affordable cost. The material can be selected to match the natural tooth shade. Composite filling materials containing epoxy are used to reduce the risk of secondary caries. Photopolymers harden due to ultraviolet, are of good quality, and are often used for anterior teeth. This material gives a natural shine and aesthetics, has high strength and durability. Photopolymer has practically no drawbacks, which makes it one of the most used material for modern fillings.

The Best Tooth Filling Material

The choice of filling material should be approached with great responsibility since the quality of treatment depends on it. If you want the best options available, you should consult your doctor who will help you to make best choice.

Here you can find the best filling materials of high quality.

Irm dental material is a low-strength base material applied as a temporary cement filling in case the patient comes back later for reduction. This material is a zinc oxide eugenol cement for temporary restorations and liner creation. This is an intermediate temporary filling material. It’s used for the recovery of deciduous teeth, emergency restorations, multi-stage caries treatment plans, in dental schools and government social programs. The application of IRM material is quite simple: powder and liquid are mixed in less than a minute and then the mass is applied into the cavity.

Another innovative system for volumetric fillings is the sonicfill. This is a sound-activated composite system for the reduction of posterior teeth with one portion of the material in one step. The SonicFill System, which combines the benefits of liquid and conventional composites, allows the doctor to restore masticatory teeth simply. This procedure includes the KaVo sonic tip, which activates the composite material. A feature of the SonicFill material is its viscosity reduction after sound activation, which allows it to quickly fill the prepared carious cavity. Doctors who use this system in their practice significantly reduce the time spent on the introduction and modeling of the composite.

Surefil composite is used for posterior reconstructions, which allows the placement of volumetric parts up to 4 mm with a short curing time of 20 seconds. This is made possible by innovation in the tension-reducing resin system. Such material offers many advantages in clinical practice. By simplifying the composite workflow, errors are less likely to occur. Surefil mechanical properties are comparable to other composites and include good shear bond strength, surface hardness and durability. This system combines efficiency and productivity, providing all the benefits in one material.

Glass ionomer cement is a whole class of modern dental materials created by combining the qualities of silicate and polyacrylic systems. Tooth filling with glass ionomer cement is gradually replacing zinc phosphate and zinc polycarboxylate cement from a dental practice. Such material is used to form permanent fillings, fillings of root canals, to fix orthopedic structures. Available in powder, liquid, capsule and paste form.

Resin composite materials have a key positive property common to all-composite filling materials: they quickly become hard almost simultaneously over the entire area. This allows them to be used to fill wide cavities, more often in pulped teeth. Compared to acrylic-based composites, resin composites are more resistant to abrasion and are much less toxic. However, there are also lacks: fragility and loss of aesthetics over time, short service life.

So what to choose for filling? Each material and system has its advantages and disadvantages. To make the right choice, seek the doctor’s help and remember: high-quality material is the key to the wear resistance and durability of the filling.