How does the dentist make a filling


After the caries has been removed, fillings are used to close tooth defects. They protect the sensitive areas of the tooth and restore the chewing function and aesthetics. Depending on the position of the tooth in the jaw, as well as the size and position of the defect on the tooth, there are a number of different filling materials that are suitable for optimal restoration. Essentially these are:

Medical research in recent years has resulted in a wealth of new products.

Small fillings

  • Amalgam in the posterior region (health insurance)
  • Composites in the anterior region
  • Composites in the posterior region
  • Cements

Big fillings

  • Amalgam in the side area (cash benefit)
  • Composites in the anterior tooth area or as a tooth build-up prior to restoration with a crown
  • Cements as a tooth structure before the restoration with a crown
  • Composites in the posterior region
  • Cements v. a. with children
  • Inlay made of gold in the posterior region
  • Inlay made of ceramic in the posterior region


Amalgam is the longest known and used filling material that is introduced into the tooth in a deformable state. Its mercury content has recently given rise to discussions about its harmlessness.

Amalgam must not be processed in the case of severe kidney dysfunction and proven allergies; amalgam is not recommended for pregnant women and children up to the age of 6 in the interests of preventive health protection.


Modern plastic-ceramic restorations are cosmetically very advantageous due to the possible approximation of the individual tooth color. They have a high degree of light transmission and reflection, which imitate the appearance of the natural tooth well. In addition, the presence of a plastic, malleable material enables direct modulation in the mouth. The curing takes place via ultraviolet light using a special lamp, so that the filling can be loaded immediately after completion.


Cements are inorganic substances which, when powder and liquid are mixed, turn into a solid mass via a plastic state. There are many different types in the dental market. They are generally intended as temporary solutions or permanent in the deciduous teeth. They are also suitable as a structure and for inserting crowns and gold inlays, and as a base for filling materials in the case of very large defects.

Inlays or inlay fillings

Inlays are dental fillings that are custom-made in the laboratory using a model created using a tooth impression. They have a much longer shelf life than plastic fillings and can be adjusted more precisely in their chewing relief. In terms of material, inlay fillings can be made from metal (mostly from an alloy with a high gold content) or ceramic.

Inlays, be they ceramic or gold, are not reimbursed by statutory health insurances in Germany, but are a private service.

Different metals in the mouth

The mixture of different metals in dentures is called an alloy. In the case of alloys, a distinction is made between gold, palladium, silver and nickel alloys according to their main component. Nickel allergy sufferers should definitely inform the dentist about their sensitization: They often also react sensitively to palladium. Although the oral mucous membrane is significantly more resistant to allergic stimuli than the skin, it is advisable not to use the substance for dentures if you have a known allergy.
With different noble alloys in the mouth, there may be slight electrical currents because the metals are charged differently. Although these tensions are harmless, they can lead to an unpleasant tingling sensation or a metallic taste when biting.