Metal dental fillings, also known as amalgam fillings, were the standard in dentistry for decades. Inexpensive, mostly effective, and fairly durable, these fillings are likely in the mouths of most adult women and men who had fillings placed even as recently as five or ten years ago.
But should metal fillings be replaced? Is removing amalgam fillings a good idea?
Why Replace Metal Fillings
Amalgam fillings are not temperature stable. Hot and cold liquids or foods can cause metal fillings to expand and contract. This can, over time, chip, crack, or even break healthy tooth enamel. It can also allow the filling to come loose or fall out.
Because metal cannot be bound to the surface of teeth, it has to be packed into a larger space. This means that even small cavities must be expanded to provide enough room for the metal to fill. Drilling a larger hole further weakens the tooth by removing healthy structure, which also increases risks for additional damage as the filling expands and contracts. And all of this is to say nothing of the appearance of these dark and shiny restorations.
Why Composite Resins are Superior
Composite fillings, also known as tooth colored fillings, are not impacted by temperature changes. They will not expand or contract. They will not chip, crack, or break teeth. Bonded to the surface of the tooth, composite fillings prevent bacteria from entering a cavity without the need for excessive enamel removal, further protecting your teeth from damage.
Stronger, much more attractive, and more effective than amalgam fillings, tooth colored fillings are also mercury free. While there is some debate over the dangers posed by mercury in dental fillings, multiple peer-reviewed studies suggest its presence is troubling, particularly for children and pregnant women.
Mission Viejo family dentist Dr. E.M. Makhoul has chosen to offer a practice to help protect the health of all of our patients while providing the safest, strongest, and most aesthetically pleasing restorations available today.
If you are looking for a mercury-free family dentistry practice in Mission Viejo, Laguna Niguel, or surrounding areas, call Dr. E.M. Makhoul at 949-596-0296 to schedule an appointment today.