Comparing White Fillings and Silver Amalgam Dental Fillings
A dental filling is used to replace and restore damaged tooth structure due to tooth decay, a cavity, or a fracture. At Cromer and Cairns Dental, we use white fillings (composites) to restore your smile and teeth to a more natural look and feel. We also replace old, broken-down silver amalgam/metal fillings that contain traces of mercury with our tooth-colored fillings. With today’s advancements in dentistry, no longer will you need to suffer through the embarrassment of silver amalgam fillings. Eliminate the dark appearance caused by silver fillings with our state-of-the-art white filling materials. To learn more about the dental fillings offered in our office, please contact Cromer and Cairns Dental today at (772) 672-3858 to schedule a consultation with our dentists!
What Are Dental Fillings, and How Are They Used?
As their name implies, dental fillings are used to “fill” a tooth with a restorative material in instances where a large portion of the tooth’s structure is damaged or decayed. The most common reason for needing a dental filling is a cavity, which is a word many of our patients dread hearing. A cavity is a hole in your tooth’s structure caused by tooth decay that gets bigger and deeper over time. One of the leading causes of cavities is plaque. When bacteria in your mouth cling to your tooth enamel, their acids (in the form of plaque) eat away your healthy tooth structure. A toothache from a cavity occurs when the tooth decay spreads to where your tooth’s sensitive nerve endings are. When you have a cavity, our Vero Beach dentists will remove the decayed part of your tooth and replace it with a cavity filling. Dental fillings are also used to repair or restore teeth that have been worn down from grinding your teeth or biting your fingernails – two bad habits many of our patients are guilty of at Cromer and Cairns Dental!
Advantages Offered by White Fillings to Fill Your Cavities
Many types of dental fillings have been used by dentists to restore teeth over the years. In the past, it was not uncommon for dentists to use gold or silver amalgam fillings. While gold and silver fillings are durable, they do not always make the most desirable choice. Cromer and Cairns Dental uses white fillings in our Vero Beach dentist office, which offer the following advantages to our patients:
- Bond to Your Teeth – Because white fillings bond directly to teeth, they help strengthen them and restore their original shape. On the other hand, silver amalgam fillings have been known to weaken teeth, making them more susceptible to breaking. Broken teeth can be costly to replace. White amalgam can save you time and money in the long run.
- Natural-Looking Results – Most of our patients prefer white dental fillings. This is due to their natural color, strength, and overall appearance and feel. Composites are often more comfortable than silver amalgam fillings.
- Less Tooth Sensitivity – Hot and cold sensitivity is greatly reduced with composite filling material compared to the silver/mercury amalgams.
- Less Tooth Removal – Restorations done with composites require less removal of a tooth’s structure to place than those with amalgams. Smaller holes are needed with a composite filling, which is welcomed news by the majority of our patients.
What Should I Expect During My Dental Fillings Procedure?
Getting a cavity filled is not as horrible as it sounds. An anesthetic is administered to numb the tooth, so you shouldn’t feel anything other than mild discomfort during the procedure (a lot less pain than you probably experienced from your toothache). A small drill is used to remove the damaged part of your tooth, followed by a gel to cleanse any bacteria or debris remaining on your tooth. Once we have inserted the filling material, we use a specialized light to cure it. Finally, your tooth is ready to be polished. Follow-up visits ensure the filling remains in place. We may recommend more frequent dental cleanings or the use of fluoride mouth rinses to prevent further tooth decay. White (composite) fillings tend to last anywhere from 5-15 years, depending on your oral hygiene and habits.
Call Our Vero Beach Dentist to Discuss Cavities & Tooth Decay
Do you have a question about cavities, tooth decay, or dental fillings? Contact our Vero Beach dentist office today to discuss your dental concerns with someone from Cromer and Cairns Dental. Depending on how severe your tooth decay is, we offer many restorative solutions, ranging from dental fillings to dental bridges and dental implants. Once we determine your best option, our staff will discuss insurance coverage and payment options to help make our dental services more affordable for your family.