If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity when biting into hot or cold food or feeling pain in a part of your mouth when you eat something sweet, you might need a dental filling. Having dental fillings restores your teeth to their full function and addresses any pain or sensitivity you might be feeling. If you’ve been wondering ‘how much do dental fillings cost’ these days, you should remember that the sooner you can address a cavity, the smaller it is and the cheaper the procedure will be. Let’s have a look at what you should be thinking about when it comes to the cost of tooth fillings.
What Are Dental Fillings?
When you have active decay on a tooth, the acidic nature of the bacteria causes the surface of the tooth to be eroded away. The result can be a small hole or cavity. If the cavity is deep enough, it can expose your tooth root, which can lead to pain and discomfort. Because it is possible to have cavities in your teeth and not be aware of them (the back of your mouth is very dark), regular visits to your dentist are the most effective way to manage tooth cavities.
How Does The Tooth Filling Procedure Work?
First, your dentist will examine your mouth and teeth. If there is a concern about how deep the cavity goes, your dentist may take an x-ray. But before the hole can be patched up, your dentist needs to clean out any active decay and bacteria first. Tooth fillings are one of the most commonly performed dental procedures, and even though you might feel a little nervous, try to remember that your dentist is very experienced and knows what to do to make the procedure as comfortable as possible.
How Much Do Dental Fillings Cost?
The cost of your dental fillings will be calculated based on a few variables. Factors such as
- The location of the filling
- The number of fillings that need to be done
- The number of surfaces that must be treated
- The type of material used
will all impact the total cost of your tooth fillings.
Smile.com.au’s Dental Fee survey from 2020 states that patients can expect to pay an average of around $275 for a simple filling while a more complex procedure may cost up to $475. Remember, the sooner you visit your dentist, the smaller the cavity, the less work will be required and the smaller your total cost will be. Your dentist has the advantage of being able to see into the back of your mouth using special instruments and may be able to alert you to a small cavity before you feel any pain, and before a large part of your tooth has eroded.
By contrast, choice.com.au gives a price range of $110 to $280 for a dental filling. These prices were based on the Australian Dental Association’s fee survey from 2019, so they may need to be updated.
What Material Types Are Available For Dental Fillings?
The choice of material is usually recommended by your dentist, based on your lifestyle and budget needs. Of course, the longest-lasting material is usually desirable, but these materials do cost more to outlay before your procedure.
Some of your filling options for fillings include:
Amalgam is one of the most affordable and longest lasting filling types but because of its noticeable metallic look, it is better suited for use on back teeth
Composite resin fillings can be completed quickly and affordably.
Resin can also be colour matched to suit the restored teeth but it is quite soft and has a shorter lifespan of four to eight years.
Gold can be used as an inlay or onlay. It is very strong and long-lasting, with a lifespan of up to 25 years with good dental care. Because of the cost, gold is not used as commonly anymore
Porcelain looks very closely like natural teeth. It is stain resistant and very strong. It does have a higher cost than composite resin and amalgam.
Are Dental Fillings Worth The Cost?
Unfortunately when there is active decay present, it needs to be treated otherwise the tooth decay will destroy the tooth and possibly lead to an infection in your gums. The cost of tooth fillings is much lower than tooth replacements and your natural teeth are still stronger than any tooth replacement. Dental implants are the most effective way of replacing missing teeth, however, they are much more expensive than fillings and require considerably more downtime and healing.
Furthermore, visiting your dentist every six months is preferable to being woken up in the middle of the night with crippling toothache because of decay that has damaged your tooth root. We always advocate that prevention is better than cure and like to remind our patients that you only get one set of permanent teeth in your lifetime.
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