PATIENT EDUCATION – AMALGAM FILLINGS
What are amalgam fillings?
Amalgam or silver fillings are the metal coloured fillings that many people have. Amalgam was the traditional material used for fillings for many years however they do contain small amounts of mercury.
Why should I consider white fillings?
Most people have fillings of one sort or another in their mouths. Nowadays fillings are not only functional, but can be natural looking as well. Many people don’t want silver fillings that show when they laugh or smile because they are more conscious about the way they look.
Are they as good as silver amalgam fillings?
White fillings have always been considered less long lasting than silver amalgam fillings. But there are now new materials available with properties comparable to silver amalgam, and these are proving to be very successful. The life expectancy of a white filling can depend greatly on where it is in your mouth and how heavily your teeth come together when you bite. Your dentist can advise you on the life expectancy of your fillings.
Is it worth replacing my amalgam fillings with white ones?
It is usually best to change fillings only when your dentist decides that an old filling needs replacing. If so you can ask to have it replaced in a tooth-coloured material.
What are tooth-coloured fillings made of?
This can vary, but they are mainly made of glass particles, synthetic resin and a setting ingredient. Your dentist should be able to give you more information about the particular material that they use.
Visit your dentist at least once a year for a check up.