If you're over 25, you most likely remember the ugly metallic fillings dentists used to use. In fact, they're still widely used today, but for aesthetic, quality, and overall health, many dentists have switched entirely to white fillings made of resin or porcelain. Here are some reasons dentists say they only use white fillings.
A stronger, more durable filling - On the Boston cosmetic dentistry pages of Dental Partners of Boston website they explain that unlike with amalgam, white fillings are securely bonded with the tooth. This not only provides strength to the tooth, it keeps out material that can damage teeth from the inside out. Additionally, metal fillings expand and contract with changes in temperature. Just Smiles, a dental office in Hilliard, Ohio adds that this can cause teeth to crack beyond repair if left unchecked over enough time. This can introduce new cavities or even cause the tooth to be lost altogether.
Aesthetics - The attractiveness of white fillings over amalgam is indisputable. Whenever you open your mouth with metallic fillings people can see the dark gray blotches on your teeth. Even when inside the tooth, the enamel shows hints of the gray underneath. So teeth with amalgam fillings will never be quite white. The white resin easily blends with teeth whitening procedures. At Dental Partners of Boston they advertize that they can shade white fillings to match existing tooth color. This means they will be practically invisible.
Mercury - The old mercury-amalgam filling has been widely used for decades. Many dentists have assumed none of the toxic metal was released into the body. But today there is evidence that over time these fillings slowly exude a gaseous form of mercury. Certain tissues in the body, notably brain tissue, absorb the mercury where it can have very dangerous effects. The local Hilliard, Ohio dentist points out this technology has been around since the Civil War. Just Smiles refuse to use mercury on any of their patients.
The modern technology in white tooth fillings is simply a better product that the 150-year-old amalgam filling. It not only provides a better looking, longer lasting fix for your dental problems, it may be safer for your overall health. Ask your dental office if they offer mercury-free white fillings before your next appointment.