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What is a filling?

Kids need fillings, a material that fills a hole, usually when there’s decay in a tooth or a hole. But what is that material?


Today, with the advent of new materials, dental fillings have come a long way from the old days where metal fillings (amalgam) were a norm.

There’s a lot of research and development into making these materials last in a wet environment (your mouth) and stay there when your kids munch on tough and crunchy snacks.


What is it?

White fillings or known as composite is a type of resin— very similar to hard plastics that are made today for other products. In fact many plastic companies such as 3M which you may have heard of (they make tape) are big players in this space.


What about the blue light?


You might have noticed this when your dentist placed a blue light after a procedure.

When we place the white filling material into the tooth, it is initially quite malleable.

By placing a blue light on this material, it allows us to set it once its in the tooth. This is much better and allows the dentist much more control than racing to place the material, if the material hardens by a certain time.


If you have any further questions about fillings, comment below!

Dr Kevin Ho
Dr Kevin Ho
Dr Kevin Ho is a Australian and Canadian Board Certified Dentist, Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia

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