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It is a branch of dentistry that deals with restoring teeth affected by the most common conditions – Dental caries or tooth decay. Dental caries can be present on the biting surfaces of teeth, approximal surface facing the adjacent tooth, or the angle of the tooth or it may involve a major portion of the tooth surfaces. The treatment is primarily aimed at removing all the decay and caries leaving behind healthy tooth structure which can then be restored to its normal function and anatomy, using various restorative materials. Initially, the commonly used material was silver amalgam, etc. However, with the demand for esthetics increasing in recent times, tooth coloured fillings are more preferred.



They are types of synthetic resins, which are used in dentistry as restorative materials or adhesives. They are most commonly composed of Bis-GMA and other dimethacrylate monomers, a filler material such as silica, and most applications, a photoinitiator. The composite resin is available in the form of tubes, through which it is dispensed, and different shades simulating the various tooth shades and stains are available so as to make the final restoration look as natural as possible. Prior to filling in the cavity, the tooth surface is etched with etchant which is normally 30-40% phosphoric acid, and then rinsed with water and air dried. This leaves behind a frosty white surface. Following this, a bonding agent is applied, and cured. Composites are placed while still in the dough-like stage, in increments (packable) or flowable state, followed by activation by light of blue wavelength emitted from a light cure unit. This causes the composite resin to harden or polymerize into a solid filling. If filling is deep and too close to the nerve inside the tooth, some patients can complain of sensitivity. The biting surface also has to be adjusted to make it comfortable, otherwise patient can get sensitivity on eating or chewing. After the adjustments are done every filling is finished with aluminum oxide discs and polishing strips to get a smooth surface. A properly placed composite is comfortable, esthetically pleasing, strong, durable, and could last for several years. It is generally very difficult to distinguish between a natural tooth structure and composite resin restoration, if done properly.



It is a dental restorative material for fillings and cementation of crowns. It is based on reaction of silicate glass powder and an ionomer. They bond chemically to dental hard tissues and release fluoride for a long period. It generally sets in 6-8 minutes. It is generally opaque cement. Even though it is used in the anterior teeth, it is opaque and not highly esthetic. Sometimes resins are added to make it more translucent. This is Resin Modified Glass Ionomer, which is light cured. These are glass ionomers that are modified by the inclusion of a resin monomer. They are stronger and have an improved translucency over the original glass ionomer cement that set through an acid base reaction. Following placement, the top layer of the restoration will be irradiated for 20 seconds, following which it sets and attains a smooth glassy surface.Different types of fillings are indicated for cavities on:Read more