It really depends on the affected tooth and patient. Dentists have traditionally used gold, silver or porcelain for their fillings. However, some newer compounds for fillings have been used with great success. These new dental restoratives include ceramic and other plastic compounds that mimic the appearance of your natural teeth. These compounds, which are usually used on the front teeth due to their ability to appear as natural tooth material, are known as composite resins.
Not only are there a variety of different compounds used for fillings but there are actually two different kinds of fillings. These two different types of fillings are known as direct or indirect fillings. The main difference between these types of fillings is the number of visits it takes to apply the filling. A direct filling is placed into an affected tooth during a single visit. Indirect fillings typically take two or more visits. Indirect fillings include veneers and inlays that are made with composite resins or ceramics in a lab.