How much does it cost to fill a tooth cavity?

This article focuses on one of the popular dental procedures: filling. We’ve discussed the process’s dental filling costs and all other relevant information here.

To undergo this procedure, you must read through all the details.

Teeth Cavity Filling Cost

Professional dental care involves a variety of procedures that have to do with a root canal, extractions, braces, teeth cleaning, and veneers.

Others include teeth whitening, braces, crowns, fillings, root canals, dentures, and bonding. All of these procedures cater to varying needs or problems.

About Dental Filling

Before we get into the cost of dental filling procedures, let’s first have a general idea of the process.

As expected, a dental filling is a treatment that seeks to address several problems. One of your teeth may have a cavity or might be cracked.

Other reasons you may need dental filling include chipped teeth and filling replacement. Now there are multiple causes for a dental filling.

Such include taking foods with high acidity, consuming lots of sugar, and not brushing or flossing. All of these are likely to affect dental health negatively.

Dental Filling Cost Details

There are varying dental filling cost procedures, each serving a specific purpose.

The cost will largely depend on the fillings used, the dental procedure used, and whether or not you have dental insurance. Also, getting a temporary dental filling may affect the eventual cost.

Starting with the basics, the American Dental Association 2020 Survey of Dental Fees without insurance found the average cost of filling to be around $145 to $191.

Now actual costs can go a lot higher depending on several factors. Such factors include cavity size and the number of teeth to be filled.

What more? Dentist pricing, dental health condition, clinic location, and the teeth to be filled all impact dental filling costs.

Before we examine these factors, let’s look at the type of fillings and how much they cost.

i. Types and Costs of Dental Fillings

There are multiple dental fillings, including composite, cast gold, silver amalgam, and porcelain fillings.

Here, the cost of dental fillings will be determined by the material used for the procedure. So, how much do these cost? Let’s take a look at each.

  • Composite Fillings

Dental filling procedures involving this type (composite fillings) of fillings will attract a cost of around $130 to $332. This applies to one or two surfaces. Any number of cavities above that (3 or higher) will attract a higher fee of around $189 to $472.

Also called composite resin fillings, this filling material has the same color as your tooth’s enamel.

While it serves the purpose of filling up cavities, composite fillings must be replaced at least every five years. You may want to discuss the ups and downsides of using this filling with your dentist.

  • Cast Gold Fillings

Dental fillings with cast gold materials tend to cost more than composite fillings. Here, costs will depend on the number of cavities to be filled.

One or two surfaces will cost $300 to $1,000. However, if dental cavities to be filled are three or more, expect a fee of around $450 to $1,800.

The advantage of using cast gold fillings is due to durability. Cast gold fillings are known to last several decades before needing replacement.

While this is an effective dental filling material, its use is not as daily as it used to be. Your dentist may offer this dental filling option.

  • Silver Amalgam Fillings

Silver amalgam fillings are among the cheapest dental filling materials you’ll find. This mainly includes a variety of metals such as copper, silver, mercury, tin, and zinc.

To have two or more dental cavities filled, it will cost anywhere from $100 to $250.

However, filling three or more dental cavities with silver amalgam will cost around $155 to $360. In terms of durability, silver amalgam fillings won’t last up to gold fillings but can serve for up to a decade.

One of the downsides of using silver amalgam fillings is the potential to cause teeth fractures.

Such fractures result from the expansion of the metal. The silver coloration may also not be attractive to many people as the color differs, thus making them more noticeable.

  • Porcelain Fillings

This is easily the most expensive filling used for dental filling jobs.

Having your dental cavity filled with these will cost anywhere from $700 to $1,418 per procedure. Porcelain fillings can last up to a decade and a half.

The affected tooth will need to be drilled to fill your dental cavity.

After drilling the tooth, an impression of it is taken and sent to the lab to create an inlay. With the inlay made precisely as the impression, this is then fixed into the drilled hole.

One advantage of porcelain fillings is that they’re more resistant to staining.

ii. Factors Affecting Dental Filling Costs

We’ve mentioned earlier that multiple factors affect dental filling costs.

These include cavity size, number of teeth to be filled, dentist pricing, dental health condition, clinic location, and the teeth to be sealed.

Let’s have a further look at some of these factors.

  • Cavity Size

Cavity size will impact the cost of dental filling. That is because larger cavities will need more fillings and vice versa.

  • Number of Teeth to be Filled

As shown above, we’ve seen that the number of teeth needing fillings will impact the overall cost. Filling one or two cavities won’t be as expensive as doing the same for three or more holes.

  • Dentist Pricing

Dentist pricing tends to vary from one professional to the other.

There are several reasons why that is so. You’re likely to be charged higher by a more experienced or seasoned dentist than you would by a relatively new dental professional.

The cost of dental filling has been discussed above, with different scenarios. It’s important to note that actual prices may vary from those mentioned here. That is expected.

However, the cost of the procedure will always fall within the range mentioned.