Dental fillings are made of plastic compounds that mimic the appearance of natural teeth. These compounds, often called composite resins, are usually used on the front teeth where a natural appearance is important, but they can also be used on the back teeth depending on the location and extent of the tooth decay.

Several factors influence the performance, durability, longevity, and expense of dental restorations, including: the components used in the filling material, the amount of tooth structure remaining, where and how the filling is placed, and the chewing load that the tooth will have to bear.