Filling vs extraction; which is better long-term? Our dentist in Sydney’s perspective


You have had a sharp pain in your tooth for a while and have decided to finally attend your biannual check-up.

After an examination, a member of our team tells you that you need a filling as one of your teeth has quite a large cavity. But the thought of having a filling fills you with fear and you ask for extraction instead.

This is quite a common scenario in our clinic; many patients don’t want a filling as the sound of the drill fills them with anxiety. Or perhaps they have heard that having an extraction is easier in the long-term. Fillings can and do fall out, but if a tooth is extracted it can’t exactly fall out can it?

At Spa Dental Sydney, our dentist in Sydney will always offer your personalised advice on what they believe to be the best treatment for you. And while we will always put your needs first, we will offer you guidance on every procedure we offer, using jargon-free language to help you make an informed choice.

But should you go for a filling or an extraction? Our dentist in Sydney breaks down these procedures so you can choose which one is right for you. Enjoy!


OK, so when our dentist in Sydney gives you a filling, there will be a numbing injection and some drilling. If you are not a fan of the drill, we can advise you to wear earphones, so you can listen to some relaxing music.

With an extraction, there is also a numbing injection, but the procedure will inevitably take longer and be a bit more invasive depending on where the tooth is located.


Initially, the cost of an extraction is higher but in the long-term, it may increase.

Remember, you will now have a gap in your teeth which will require either a bridge or an implant, adding costs to the initial extraction. While the filling may need replacing, this will be cheaper than an implant or a bridge!


Once a tooth is extracted, you may need stitches and will experience a dull ache for a few days. You will also need to avoid certain foods which may irritate the extraction site. With a filling, there should be no discomfort and you will be able to eat your regular diet as soon as the numbing agent wears off.

Secondary complications

While our team will take every care to ensure that any extraction is performed under sanitary conditions, the site may become infected.

This will then require antibiotics and thorough cleaning to prevent a second infection occurring. With a filling, there is rarely a secondary complication that is as serious as an infection. You may have some sensitivity, but this will fade.


There is no time frame on an extraction; once the tooth is removed, that’s it. But the gap will last a lifetime. A composite filling should also offer a long lifespan depending on your general dental hygiene.


All treatment carries risks. Individual consultation is required with one of our practitioners to ensure that the treatment is right for you.