Should You Replace Your Silver Fillings?

If you have one or more silver fillings in your mouth, then you may be considering getting them replaced with composite fillings. Dentists use fillings to fill the space after decay has been removed from a tooth. Silver fillings, or amalgams, have been used for many years but carry many drawbacks. The filling is typically not airtight, which causes the amalgam to leak and corrode over time. This has probably occurred if you notice your silver filling or your tooth has blackened. In addition, patients report more sensitivity in their teeth with silver fillings. The good news is that you are not stuck with your silver fillings forever. Many cosmetic dentists offer replacement for your amalgams with tooth-colored fillings, which are also called composite fillings.

Composite fillings are a great alternative to silver fillings when you have a cavity or need silver fillings replaced. They are made out of a porcelain type material that actually bonds to your teeth to create a strong, tight seal. The cosmetic benefit of a tooth-colored filling can be the biggest reason patients choose to replace their silver fillings with composites. You can enjoy the more natural appearance of a composite filling since it made to match the color of your teeth.

Another reason you may be interested in replacement with a tooth-colored filling, is the presence of metal and mercury in a silver filling. Amalgams consist of 50% mercury along with a combination of silver, tin, and copper. The mercury found in silver fillings has been a highly debated topic in the dental industry.

Some people are concerned with the possible harmful mercury content in their silver fillings despite the fact that the FDA and National Institutes of Health (NIH) stated that “the current data is insufficient to support an association between mercury release from amalgams and the various complaints that have been attributed to this restorative material”. If you are still uneasy with the mercury in your amalgam fillings, you may want to have them replaced with composite or tooth-colored fillings.

Group Health Dental offers complete restorative and cosmetic dentistry to patients which include the service of tooth-colored fillings. You deserve to be confident in your teeth and your dental work.

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