Nowadays fillings can be natural looking. Many people are more conscious about the way they look, so they do not want silver fillings that show when they laugh or smile. White fillings have always been considered less long-lasting than silver amalgam fillings. But there are now new materials available that are comparable to silver amalgam, and these are proving to be very successful. Tooth-colored fillings are bonded to your teeth and can be placed with minimal tooth preparation. What’s more, the composite resin used in white fillings is not impacted by temperature fluctuations and will remain in place, protecting both the underlying cavity and the integrity of your natural tooth for years to come.
Dental amalgam fillings are sometimes called “silver” fillings and are seldom used nowadays. Because these fillings are silver in color, they are used to fill back teeth. They are a mix of metals such as mercury, silver, copper, and tin. The advantages are they are less expensive, last long and easy to put in place. The disadvantages are they may not appeal to people because of the silver in color and tiny amounts of mercury are released. For most people, this bit of mercury is nothing to worry about. Studies have shown that amalgam fillings do not cause illness. They have been used on people for more than 150 years.
Most people are familiar with dental crowns. Crowns are used when the damage to the tooth is severe. There are, however, other options if the damage is not as drastic as to require a crown. Inlays and Onlays can be used to repair the tooth. Unlike a filling, however, they normally require two office visits, one to make the mold and then another to apply them. They are a better alternative to a filling because a filling can weaken a tooth whereas an inlay or an onlays can actually strengthen the tooth structure. Inlays and Onlays are also good options to replace large old metal fillings because they are the actual tooth color as well.