What Factors Determine The Cost Of A Filling?

When you need a filling, the cost will depend on a lot of factors. There is no ‘standard’ filling. Each treatment is different and therefore the cost will vary too.

These factors affecting cost will include:

  • The type of material used.  White fillings generally cost more than silver options.  White restorations take longer to place, require more skill and more equipment than the silver alternative.
  • The size of the filling.  Basically, the larger it is, the longer it takes to place and the more materials are needed. So the cost will be more for larger restorations. Also larger treatments tend to need more re-enforcement such as..
  • Bonding/pins/posts are needed.  These may be placed before a filling is added.  They are necessary in some circumstances to help hold a large restoration in place for longer.  Any pins/posts will increase the cost.
  • Dental bonding prices are generally higher. This type of white filling usually requires more artistry and precision from the dentist.
  • The location of your dentist. A clinic based in Palm Beach will cost more than one in, say, the Philippines!
  • The skills and qualifications of your dentist.  If your dentist has invested time into further education and training, they will command a higher fee.
  • Your dental insurance/practice payment scheme.  There are a variety of schemes which will help spread out the cost of treatments.
  • Whether a temporary filling was needed or not, before the permanent treatment is placed.  This treatment involves an extra visit and so will increase the overall cost of a filling…


Temporary fillings

Temporary fillings like these may need to be placed before a permanent one. They will affect the overall cost

Temporary restorations

Your dentist may decide/need to place a temporary filling if:

  • You attend in an emergency.
  • You have pain in a tooth beforehand.  Your dentist may try a temporary filling to give the tooth a better chance of settling.
  • Even if the tooth has not been sore, your dentist may still elect to use a temporary.  This may happen when the dentist finds cavity to lie very close to the nerve due to deep decay.
  • Your treatment dictates that more than one visit is needed, e.g. getting an inlay.

A temporary filling is usually made from a soothing material that helps settle down the nerve. Having one placed in a deep cavity may help the nerve heal itself and reduce the chances of it needing root canal treatment later.

Temporaries are usually not strong enough to last very long in the mouth.  They will crack/wear away/dissolve within few months.  Always re-attend to get treatment finished when your dentist advises.  Otherwise, the tooth may become permanently damaged, as decay may set in under it.


Tooth Filling Cost:  Summary


You have seen that there are a lot of factors that affect a tooth filling cost. These factors include the type of material used, the size of the filling and whether a temporary is also needed or not.

Always ask your dentist for a quote before work is started. And remember, that the earlier any cavities are detected and treated, the better it is for you and your wallet!

Return here to the main page on dental fillings.

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