Do Dental Fillings Last Forever?

Cartoon showing fillings were used in antiquity.
Image by Authority Dental under CC 2.0

Fillings are a common and effective treatment for cavities. They’re necessary because after a dentist removes decay from your teeth, there’s a hole left behind. Placing a filling resolves the issue. Do dental fillings last forever?

What Are Fillings Made From?

Because fillings need to protect a tooth, the materials are durable. In the past, silver and gold fillings were the go-to treatment. Silver fillings, which are also called amalgam fillings, are made from a blend of silver, tin, copper, and liquid mercury. Gold fillings are also a mix of metals like gold and copper. Gold is the most durable material, but it costs the most and doesn’t blend in with your smile. We use composite resin for our fillings. This safe, effective material matches your tooth color.

How Long Do Fillings Last?

Because gold is so durable, fillings can last as long as 20 years. Silver fillings last around 10-15 years. Composite resin fillings last around 10 years. They may crack or wear down sooner depending on your lifestyle, where the filling is, and how well you care for your teeth. Good oral hygiene at home and regular trips to the dentist will help your filling last even longer. Fillings can last much longer than expected with good care. If the filling breaks or has other issues, we’ll need to replace it.

How Much Do Fillings Cost?

The cost of a filling depends on where we’re placing it and how bad the cavity is. Tooth-colored fillings tend to cost more than other materials. If you have insurance, your plan may cover some of the cost because fillings are restorative.

Dental Fillings at Northside Dental in Raleigh, NC

No dental filling lasts forever, but they last many years if you take care of your teeth. As dental technology advances, materials will get stronger, as well. Do you have any questions or want to schedule an appointment with Dr. Metwally? Please contact us today!