Tooth Filling Cost with Insurance: Understanding Dental Fillings

Dental fillings are a common procedure used to restore teeth damaged by decay or cavities. They help to regain the shape, function, and strength of the affected tooth. The cost of tooth fillings can vary significantly depending on various factors such as the type of filling material used, insurance coverage, and additional procedures required. Dental insurance plays a significant role in determining the out-of-pocket expenses for dental fillings. Understanding your insurance policy is crucial in estimating how much you will need to pay for this dental treatment.

Understanding Dental Fillings

Dental fillings play a crucial role in maintaining oral health and preventing further damage to your teeth. When cavities are left untreated, they can lead to more extensive and expensive dental treatments down the line. That’s why getting timely dental fillings is so important.


There are different types of dental fillings available, each with its own unique characteristics. Gold fillings, for example, are known for their durability and long-lasting nature. They are highly resistant to wear and tear but tend to be more expensive compared to other filling materials.

Porcelain fillings offer a natural appearance that matches the color of your teeth. They blend seamlessly with your smile and are stain-resistant, making them a popular choice for front teeth restorations.


Composite fillings, on the other hand, are made from a mixture of plastic and glass materials. They provide good durability and can be color-matched to your natural teeth. Composite fillings also tend to be an affordable option for many patients.

One of the key benefits of early detection is that it allows for less invasive treatment options like dental fillings. By identifying cavities in their early stages during regular dental check-ups, you can prevent further decay and potential tooth loss.

Cost of Dental Fillings with Insurance

Several factors can influence how much you will pay. One important factor is whether or not you have dental insurance coverage.

The average cost of dental fillings can vary depending on factors such as location and the material used for the filling. On average, a single tooth filling can range from $50 to $450. However, this cost may increase if additional procedures are required alongside the filling.

Fortunately, dental insurance plans typically cover a portion of the cost for tooth fillings. While coverage percentages may vary depending on your specific policy, most plans cover around 70% to 80% of the total cost. It’s essential to review your insurance policy carefully to understand what percentage is covered by your plan.

For individuals without traditional dental insurance, there is another option: dental savings plans. These plans provide discounted rates for various dental treatments, including fillings. They offer an alternative solution that can help reduce out-of-pocket expenses associated with getting a tooth filled.

Average Cost of Tooth Fillings

There are a few factors to consider. One important factor is whether or not you have dental insurance. If you do have insurance, your out-of-pocket costs will typically be lower compared to someone without insurance.

If you have dental insurance, the exact amount you pay for tooth fillings will depend on your plan’s coverage percentage. Some plans may cover a higher percentage of the cost, while others may cover less. It’s important to check with your insurance provider to understand what your specific coverage entails.

In addition to the coverage percentage, it’s also essential to be aware of any deductibles or annual maximums that apply. Deductibles are the amount you need to pay before your insurance starts covering costs, and annual maximums set limits on how much your plan will pay for dental procedures in a given year.

On the other hand, if you don’t have dental insurance, the cost of tooth fillings can be higher since you’ll be responsible for paying the full amount out-of-pocket. However, there are alternative options available that can help manage these costs. For example, some people choose to enroll in dental savings plans which offer discounted rates at participating dentists’ offices.

Exploring payment strategies with your dentist may also provide some relief.

It’s worth noting that state-wise costs can vary within the United States due to regional pricing and differences in cost of living. Researching local dental clinics and comparing prices can help find more affordable options based on where you live.

Types of Dental Fillings and Costs

There are several options available, each with its own benefits and costs. Let’s explore the different types of dental fillings and their associated costs.

Gold fillings are known for their durability and longevity. They are often more expensive compared to other filling materials due to the cost of gold itself. Gold fillings are typically recommended for back teeth restorations where strength is crucial.

Porcelain fillings offer a natural and aesthetically pleasing appearance. They are resistant to staining and provide excellent durability. Porcelain fillings are commonly used for front teeth restorations where aesthetics play a significant role.

Composite fillings, made from a mixture of plastic and glass materials, can be color-matched to your natural teeth, providing a seamless look. These versatile fillings can be used for both front and back teeth restorations.

Silver amalgam is another traditional option for tooth restorations. It is strong and durable, making it suitable for back teeth that undergo heavy chewing forces. However, silver amalgam has a silver-gray color that may not blend well with natural teeth.

The cost of dental fillings can vary depending on factors such as the type of filling material used, the size of the cavity being filled, geographical location, and whether you have insurance coverage or not.

With insurance coverage, your out-of-pocket expenses for tooth filling procedures may be significantly reduced or even covered entirely by your insurance plan. The specific coverage details will depend on your insurance provider’s policies regarding dental treatments.

Factors Influencing Filling Costs

Several factors can influence the overall expense. These factors include the type of filling material, the size of the cavity, and the location of the cavity within your mouth.

Material Type: The choice of filling material can impact the cost. Different materials have varying levels of durability, aesthetics, and price points. For example, composite resin fillings are a popular choice due to their natural appearance but tend to be more expensive than amalgam fillings. On the other hand, amalgam fillings are generally more affordable but may not match your natural tooth color as well.

Cavity Size: The size of the cavity plays a role in determining filling costs. Larger cavities often require more extensive treatment, which can increase both time and resources required for completion. Early detection and treatment of cavities is crucial because smaller cavities typically require less invasive procedures and are thus less expensive to treat.

Location: The location of a cavity within your mouth also affects filling costs. Cavities in visible areas such as front teeth may require additional aesthetic considerations to ensure they blend seamlessly with your natural smile. This could involve using materials that closely match your tooth color or employing different techniques during placement. Cavities located in hard-to-reach areas might necessitate extra time and effort during dental procedures.

It’s important to note that these factors interact with one another when determining tooth filling costs with insurance¬†coverage included; therefore, discussing them thoroughly with your dentist will help you make an informed decision about which option suits both your oral health needs and budget best.

Affordable Payment Options

There are several affordable options available. One option is to consider dental savings plans. These plans offer discounted rates for various dental treatments, including fillings. By paying an annual membership fee, individuals can access reduced prices for their dental care needs.

Another advantage of dental savings plans is that they can be a cost-effective alternative for those without dental insurance. Instead of relying on insurance coverage, individuals can take advantage of the discounted rates offered by these plans. This can help significantly reduce the out-of-pocket expenses associated with tooth fillings.

In addition to dental savings plans, discussing payment options and strategies with your dentist can also help manage the cost of tooth fillings. Some dental clinics offer flexible payment plans or financing options to make treatment more affordable.

By exploring different payment strategies and discussing them with your dentist, you may find a solution that fits within your budget and makes tooth fillings more accessible.

Alternatives and Additional Treatments

There are alternative treatments that may be necessary depending on the condition of your tooth. One such treatment is a tooth extraction. In some cases, if the cavity is too severe or if there isn’t enough healthy tooth structure left, your dentist may recommend removing the tooth before filling the cavity. However, it’s important to note that this will add to the overall cost of your treatment.

Another possible additional treatment for extensive cavities is a crown or a root canal procedure. If your dentist determines that the decay has spread deep into the tooth or if there is significant damage, they may recommend one of these procedures in addition to filling the cavity. Both crowns and root canals can increase the total cost of your treatment.

In certain situations, you may also require medications as part of your dental treatment plan. These medications could be prescribed before or after the filling procedure depending on your specific needs. It’s essential to follow all instructions provided by your dentist regarding any prescribed medications as they play an important role in ensuring successful healing and recovery. However, keep in mind that prescription medications can contribute to an increase in overall treatment costs.

Ultimately, when considering options for treating cavities with insurance coverage, it’s crucial to discuss all potential alternatives and additional treatments with your dentist. They will evaluate your specific case and provide recommendations based on what they believe will result in optimal oral health outcomes while taking into account factors such as affordability and insurance coverage.

Choosing the Right Dentist

One important factor to consider is choosing the right dentist. Evaluating the worth of dental fillings and understanding the significance of regular check-ups can help in making an informed decision.

Considering the long-term benefits and potential savings, dental fillings are worth the investment. Timely treatment prevents further decay and more expensive dental procedures. By addressing cavities early on, dentists can perform less invasive treatments like fillings, saving both time and money. Moreover, maintaining oral health through fillings contributes to overall well-being by preventing tooth loss and promoting proper chewing function.

Regular dental check-ups play a significant role in preventing extensive damage caused by cavities or other oral health issues. These routine visits allow for early detection of problems such as cavities before they worsen. Detecting cavities at an early stage enables dentists to provide less invasive and costly treatments like fillings instead of more complex procedures like root canals or extractions.

In addition to cavity detection, routine check-ups help maintain optimal oral health by addressing any underlying dental issues that may arise over time. Dentists can identify signs of gum disease, tooth decay, or other concerns during these appointments. By promptly treating these conditions through appropriate interventions such as fillings when necessary, patients can prevent future complications and ensure their continued oral well-being.

Choosing a qualified dentist who specializes in preventive care is crucial for receiving quality treatment while maximizing insurance coverage benefits. Regular visits to a trusted dentist not only contribute to better oral health but also provide peace of mind knowing that any potential problems will be detected early on.


In conclusion, understanding the cost of tooth fillings with insurance is crucial for making informed decisions about dental care. This article has provided a comprehensive overview of the factors influencing filling costs, the average cost of tooth fillings, and the various types of dental fillings available. By considering these factors, individuals can better navigate their options and choose a filling that aligns with their budget and oral health needs.

It is important to note that while cost is a significant consideration, it should not be the sole determining factor when selecting a dentist or treatment. Quality of care, experience, and reputation are equally important in ensuring optimal outcomes. Therefore, it is recommended to carefully research and choose a reputable dentist who can provide both affordable options and high-quality dental services.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are dental fillings?

Dental fillings are materials used to restore teeth that have been damaged by decay or cavities. They help to prevent further decay and restore the tooth’s functionality.

How much do tooth fillings cost with insurance?

The cost of tooth fillings with insurance can vary depending on your specific coverage. On average, you can expect to pay between $50 and $300 per filling after insurance coverage.

What is the average cost of tooth fillings?

The average cost of a tooth filling without insurance ranges from $100 to $250 for amalgam (silver) fillings, and between $150 and $450 for composite (tooth-colored) fillings.

What factors influence the cost of dental fillings?

Several factors can affect the cost of dental fillings, including the type of material used, the size and location of the cavity, your dentist’s experience and expertise, as well as any additional treatments required before placing the filling.

Are there affordable payment options available for dental fillings?

Yes, many dentists offer flexible payment plans or financing options to make dental treatment more affordable. You may also consider dental discount plans or seeking treatment at a dental school where costs tend to be lower.