Fillings are materials placed in the teeth to replace parts of a natural tooth. The most common cause is dental decay (dental caries), a bacterial induced process that dissolves the tooth. However, other causes exist which include erosion, a process whereby tooth substance is dissolved by acid either from dietary sources or by regurgitation, and abrasion caused by mechanical wearing of the teeth eg incorrect tooth brushing. The loss of tooth substance created by the process can lead to pain as a result of exposure of the sensitive parts of the tooth called the dentine and pulp.
If you require a filling in your tooth, a cosmetic option would be to choose a white filling material that matches the shade of your surrounding natural teeth. You can also have any existing metallic fillings replaced with tooth-coloured or ‘white’ fillings. This will allow you to smile without a metallic glint in sight, giving your teeth a more natural appearance overall. Here is how white fillings work: