Enjoy a More Natural Smile with Composite Dental Fillings
Tooth decay is one of the most common chronic health conditions. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent it. In cases where treatment is necessary, a composite filling is a natural-looking and safe solution. Not only are our fillings at Davie Family Dental some of the most aesthetic restorations available today, but they are strong and long-lasting as well. We rely on high-quality materials, the latest technology, and advanced techniques to create restorations for our patients that last a lifetime. Our goal is to create results that are designed to be virtually undetectable. We use tooth-colored fillings as restorations when our patients have:
- Tooth decay
- Chipped teeth
- Cracked teeth
Cavity Prevention — What can I do to prevent the need for a filling?
The best way to fight cavities and maintain healthy gums and teeth is to keep up on your daily habit of proper oral hygiene. Here are 5 ways to ward off tooth decay and prevent cavities:
- Have a comprehensive oral exam and regular cleanings.
- Brush after meals and use an antimicrobial mouthwash.
- Drink more water and cut back on sugary and acidic drinks.
- Develop the habit of flossing every night.
- Avoid smoking.
Frequently Asked Questions about Amalgam Fillings
Why is amalgam still used to fill teeth when composite materials are available?
While composite (or tooth colored) fillings are more durable than ever thanks to advancements in technology, there are still many cases where amalgam fillings perform better (and longer). This is often the case with teeth that are naturally subjected to extensive chewing force, such as molars. Mercury is an important part of the amalgam mixture as it contains unique elements that allow it to be manipulated with ease during placement and then harden quickly after. In addition to the benefits of longevity, amalgam fillings are also more affordable than composites.
What concerns are there with mercury and its effects on the body?
Mercury is a naturally occurring metal and one that we are exposed to in small amounts through water, air, and food throughout our lives. Excessive exposure to mercury can negatively affect the brain and kidneys. However, it is important to understand that amalgam fillings do not cause dangerous levels of mercury exposure. Numerous scientific studies and thoughtful research have led the FDA to stand behind its position: amalgam fillings are a safe and effective restoration method for patients over 6 years of age.
When is it appropriate to use composite fillings?
Composite fillings are typically made of a resin and glass mixture, tinted to the color of your tooth, and commonly referred to as white or tooth-colored fillings. They serve an important purpose for teeth that are visible when smiling, providing an aesthetic benefit not afforded by silver fillings. While resin composite fillings undoubtedly look better than amalgam ones, they are generally considered to be less durable, and therefore may not be ideal for teeth that are subject to extreme chewing and biting forces. However, it is worth noting that composite materials continue to benefit from technological advancements, contributing to enhanced durability. The ADA supports composite materials in small or mid-size fillings on teeth that are exposed to moderate pressure from chewing and acknowledges that they are a good choice for a more natural-looking filling.
The bottom line
The ADA Council on Scientific Affairs has concluded that both amalgam and composite materials are considered safe and effective for tooth restoration.
If you still have concerns about amalgam fillings, please do not hesitate to call our office. It is important to us that you fully understand all available options when it comes to your oral health.