What Are White Fillings?

Getting a filling for teeth is now commonplace; in fact, a study by the British Dental Health Foundation found that 84% of all adults have at least one filling. Amalgam, or silver fillings, have long been used to treat cavities caused by tooth decay. Made up from a combination of mercury, silver, tin and copper, amalgam fillings offer a cost-effective and long-term solution to deterioration in the teeth. However, there have been concerns over the safety of amalgam fillings due to their mercury content, and although they have been shown to be safe for adults and children over the age of 6 years, there are other alternatives which don’t contain any harmful materials and provide a number of benefits for patients.

White fillings are an increasingly popular choice of dental filling, not only for their high performance but also their aesthetic benefits. Formed from composite resin, white fillings are ‘tooth coloured’ and can restore teeth whilst matching their natural appearance.

Why choose white fillings?

White fillings are a more discreet treatment to filling in cavities, allowing you to smile, eat or laugh without the worry of having silver fillings on show. Many people opt for white fillings as dentists can blend in the composite, so that it is nearly identical in colour to the actual and surrounding teeth. For a healthier and better looking smile, white fillings are an ideal choice to replace silver fillings or restore teeth that aren’t as seriously damaged by decay.


Although white fillings are known to be less long-lasting than silver amalgam fillings, there are newer materials available that can increase their life expectancy and will be able to match the performance of amalgam fillings. How long a white filling will last varies depending on its location in the mouth and factors such as your bite pattern or diet. Your dentist will be able to advise you on how long they should last.

How they work

White fillings are usually made from a mixture of glass, synthetic resin and a setting ingredient. To restore cavities, dentists will apply the composite to the affected area in layers and use a special light to harden each layer. Once the required number of layers has been achieved, the filling is shaped to fit the tooth and polished to avoid initial wear or staining.

Composite resin is also used in cosmetic dentistry to make adjustments to the colour of teeth or help to reshape the teeth and improve the look of the smile. Used in fillings, the composite resin bonds to the tooth to help support its remaining structure and prevent further damage.

Smile Spa specialises in a range of orthodontic treatments, using proven techniques tailored to your budget. If you’d like to find out more about white fillings, or are looking to replace an existing one, please contact your nearest Smile Spa dental practice today on 01564 772184 (Knowle), or 0121 3784875 (Sutton Coldfield), to book an appointment.