Which do you choose? Old-fashioned mercury fillings or safe, beautiful white fillings?
No more mercury in your mouth!!!! New technological advancements in dentistry has allowed us to do white (composite or resin) natural tooth colored filling.
The advantages of white fillings are:
- Composite fillings integrates with the tooth. It doesn't weaken the tooth as a silver filling does.
- We now can make a smaller hole, since the white material can flow into small places.
- Due to the smaller hole, there is more of your own tooth left, leaving it stronger.
- Secondary decay is easier to spot beneath tooth colored fillings.
- If damaged, they can be easily fixed.
- They are temperature and electrical insulators-resistant to extremes of heat and cold.
- Environmentally safe-no hazardous metal wastes to dispose of and no risk of mercury allergy.
- Allowing us to fix smaller cavities.
- You don't have to wait till a cavity gets "big enough to fill".
- In some cases we can do an almost microscopic filling just when it starts by using air abrasion instead of the drill. These are often done without anesthetic if we catch them early enough.
- They are a more natural, attractive choice.
- Composites bond to the tooth to support the remaining tooth to help prevent breakage.
- Composite insulate the tooth from excessive temperature changes.
- The presence of saliva can compromise the bonding process. The tooth require isolation.
- This matter will not work well on wisdom teeth because there is no adjacent tooth to shore up the outer edge.
- Potential to leak.
- Many insurance companies do not yet cover them.
How Are They Placed?
1. The decayed portions of the the tooth must be removed which leaves a hole that needs to be filled to restore the tooth to its original form and function.
2. The tooth is prepared and etched with a mild acid solution.
3.Than the composite is placed in layers, using a light specialized to harden each layer.
4. When the process is done the filling will be shaped to fit the tooth.
This filling is than polished to prevent staining and early wear. It takes the dentist about 10-20 minutes longer to place a composite than a silver filling because larger the size the longer the filling will take.