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Updated on November 16, 2023
6 min read

How Much Does a Filling Cost Without Insurance?

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The average cost of dental fillings is $200 to $400 per tooth without dental insurance.7 However, the filling cost can vary depending on the number of teeth requiring fillings, the location of the tooth, dental fees, etc.

Dental fillings are single or combinations of materials used to repair or restore teeth. It's typically used to treat cavities and tooth decay while protecting against further damage.

According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, there are various types of filling materials. These include:

  • Tooth-colored composite fillings
  • Silver-colored amalgam fillings
  • Gold fillings
  • Porcelain fillings

Types of Fillings and Their Costs

The type of material used is the most significant factor in determining the cost of dental fillings without insurance coverage.  

Cost of Composite Fillings

Composite, or composite resin fillings, usually cost between $180 to $380 for one or two surfaces or $300 to $400 for three or more surfaces.

Resin-based composite fillings are slightly more expensive than silver fillings. However, they are still cheaper than gold or porcelain fillings.

composite cavity filling NewMouth

The dental filling procedure for composite fillings involves using resin-based composite that matches the color of your tooth enamel. This makes them popular for visible tooth surfaces, like front teeth.

The resin composite material is not as durable as metal, so it usually has to be replaced every five years. However, with proper maintenance, they can last longer, up to 10 or 15 years.

Cost of Silver Amalgam Fillings

Silver amalgams, also known as metal fillings, are the cheapest type of filling. These types of fillings cost $50 to $200 if one or two surfaces need to be filled or $150 to $400 for three or more tooth fillings.

Silver amalgam fillings are durable and can last up to 10 years. They're also made from a combination of various materials, including:

  • Silver
  • Tin
  • Zinc
  • Mercury
  • Copper
amalgam filling NewMouth

However, they are less popular than other options because their silver coloring makes them much more noticeable than other types of fillings. There is also the potential for the metal to expand and cause fractures in the teeth.

Cost of Gold Fillings

Cast gold, gold foil, and gold inlays can cost between $300 and $1,000 for one or two surfaces and $450 to $1,800 for three or more fillings. Gold fillings last a long time, up to several decades.

Some people like the way they look more than silver fillings. However, finding a dentist that still uses gold for dental restorations is rare.

gold cavity filling NewMouth

Cost of Porcelain Fillings (Inlays)

A porcelain filling, also known as inlays, will cost you anywhere from $150 to $1,100 per procedure. According to the ADA, inlays are not technically “fillings,” though they can serve the same purpose.

Porcelain-ceramic inlays are the longest and most expensive filling procedure. First, a dentist will drill your tooth. Then, they will take an impression of your tooth, and the inlay will be made in a lab based on the impression.

These fillings are the most aesthetically pleasing as they are more resistant to staining. They last up to 15 years. 

Other Factors That Affect Dental Filling Cost

Other factors that affect dental filling costs include:

  • How many teeth need fillings ⁠— The more teeth that require fillings, the higher your total dental bill will be
  • Which teeth need fillings ⁠— Cavities in back molars are much more costly to repair than those in front teeth
  • Cavity size ⁠— The larger the cavity, the more expensive it is to fix
  • The current state of your oral health ⁠— If the tooth or gums are infected, multiple dental visits and treatments may be required, which will be additional costs
  • Clinic location and dentist's pricing ⁠— Dentists at smaller practices often have lower overhead expenses, which can translate into lower prices

Does Insurance Cover Dental Fillings?

Fillings aren't cosmetic or elective procedures, meaning it's covered by insurance. Composite and amalgam fillings are usually considered medically necessary.

Check if your insurance plan covers the entire procedure. In some cases, your insurance may not cover the cost of additional services like X-rays, dental exams, etc. You may also have to pay for plaque cleaning and removal before the procedure. 

Additional Costs

Additional dental procedures may be required to diagnose your oral health or improve dental work quality. Additional dental services that may be necessary include:

Dental ProcedureCost
Dental exam$90-$160
Panoramic X-ray$100-$250
Bitewing X-ray$25–$50
Periapical X-ray$25–$50
Laughing gas$25-$100
Local anesthetic$100 to $1,000
IV sedation and anesthesia$500-$1,000

How to Save Money on Cavity Fillings

If you don't have a dental insurance plan, you can save money by joining a discount dental plan, which is a membership club. You will pay an annual membership fee, starting at $99.

People with relatively healthy mouths who don’t have significant gum or teeth issues may save more money with a dental discount plan over traditional insurance. If you only need routine teeth cleanings and occasional dental work, check out Dental Plans. There are also dental assistance programs for low-cost options.

What Dental Services Are Discounted by a Discount Plan?

Depending on your discount dental plan, you can save money on the following procedures from practitioners in your network:

  • Cavity fillings
  • Inlays and onlays
  • Root canal treatment
  • Dental crowns
  • Dental implants
  • Teeth whitening treatment
  • Veneers

Why are Teeth Extracted?

Tooth extractions are needed for many different reasons. They can:

  • Remove wisdom teeth
  • Extract cavities
  • Treat advanced gum disease
  • Resolve an impacted tooth
  • Prepare the teeth for orthodontic treatment.4.

The average cost of a simple tooth extraction varies depending on your insurance and the procedure requirements.

Your dentist might tell you a dental extraction is optional. However, neglecting treatment can lead to other issues, such as:

  • Oral diseases
  • Chewing problems
  • Jaw issues
  • Shifting teeth

Common Questions on Cavity Filling Cost

How much should a tooth filling cost?

For one or two surfaces, a tooth filling should cost:

Silver amalgam: $50 to $200
Composite resin: $180 to $380
Gold fillings: $300 to $1,000
Porcelain inlays: $150 to $1,100

How much does dental work cost without insurance?

The average price of dental care without insurance is:

Routine exam and cleaning: $70 to $150
Tooth extraction: $150 to $500 per tooth
Wisdom teeth removal: $250 to $750 per tooth (depending on your condition)
Root canal: $700 to $2,100 per tooth
Dental implants: $3,100 to $5,800 per implant
Tooth sealants: $20 to $50 per tooth
Stainless Steel Crowns: $500 to $2,000 per tooth
Inlays/Onlays: $600 to $1,200

Is it cheaper to pull or fill a tooth?

It depends entirely on the condition of your tooth and whether it's a primary or adult tooth. Typically, filling an adult tooth is cheaper because you'll need extra treatment to replace the tooth. Consult with your dentist to determine which treatment is your best option.

How much would a white filling cost?

White fillings, or composite or composite resin, usually cost between $180 to $380 for one or two surfaces or $300 to $400 for three or more surfaces.


Dental fillings treat cavities and tooth decay while protecting them from further damage. They're typically made with a single or a combination of materials used to repair or restore teeth.

The average cost of dental fillings is $200 to $400 per tooth without dental insurance. The total cost of dental fillings depends on a few factors, like the number of teeth that require treatment, the location of the tooth, etc.

If you don't have a dental insurance plan, you can save money by joining a discount dental plan. They can provide discounts on various dental services, including fillings.

What’s Next?

DentalPlans is the best site for dental savings plans because it compares all the best plans in your area. You know exactly how much every procedure will cost and which dentists are available.

Last updated on November 16, 2023
7 Sources Cited
Last updated on November 16, 2023
All NewMouth content is medically reviewed and fact-checked by a licensed dentist or orthodontist to ensure the information is factual, current, and relevant.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only cite from current scientific research, such as scholarly articles, dentistry textbooks, government agencies, and medical journals. This also includes information provided by the American Dental Association (ADA), the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
  1. "Dental Fillings." National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, 2018.
  2. "Dental Filling Materials." State of Rhode Island Department of Health.
  3. "Dental Filling Options." Mouth Healthy, American Dental Association.
  4. "Different filling materials." Oral Health Foundation.
  5. "Fillings." Australian Dental Association.
  6. Smith, Y. "Dental Filling Procedure." News Medical, 2019.
  7. 2022 Survey of Dental Fees.” American Dental Association, 2022.
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