Do you have a cavity? There’s no need for metal fillings anymore. Modern fillings are attractive, blend in with your teeth, and can be very effective at protecting your teeth from future decay. We make sure your cavities get the benefit of a modern, advanced approach to dental care.
Benefits of Tooth-Colored Fillings
Tooth-colored fillings are a better approach to treating decayed teeth. Compared to old metal amalgam fillings, they:
- Blend in with natural teeth
- Look more attractive
- Don’t require as much drilling
- Can be placed more gently
- Create a seal with teeth
- Not as much temperature sensitivity
- Don’t contain toxic mercury
Tooth-colored fillings are designed to match your natural teeth appearance. They look just like your natural teeth, which means that people don’t need to know you have fillings. Amalgam fillings might start silver, but they can turn black and look worse than decay itself.
Metal amalgam fillings are simply packed into your teeth. This means that a dentist has to make a relatively large hole to properly pack in the amalgam, which requires more drilling as well as very forceful pressure on your teeth to force the amalgam tightly into place. And where amalgam just pushed up against your teeth, tooth-colored fillings actually seal your cavity with a tight bond to your teeth.
Mercury amalgam fillings can cause tooth sensitivity because they conduct heat into the depths of the tooth (deeper because of the need to drill a hole). This can make it uncomfortable to eat hot or cold foods.
Finally, metal fillings are about half mercury by weight. This mercury doesn’t stay in the filling. It evaporates and is inhaled or seeps through the tooth to be absorbed into the body. People with amalgam fillings have higher levels of mercury than people with no fillings. This includes the highly toxic methylmercury.
The Dental Filling Process
Before we place a filling, we will carefully examine your teeth to figure out if you really need a filling. Small cavities can actually reverse if you take good preventive measures.
If you do need a filling, we will remove damaged tooth material. Then we will spread the filling material into the cavity–it starts as a putty. We use a curing light to make it harden and seal with the tooth. We might apply the filling in a few layers to make sure it hardens properly. Once the filling is fully hardened, we will polish it.
The result is an attractive, almost invisible filling.