Mercury free fillings have been the talk of the town since we’ve learned that the compounds included in the metals of the old type of fillings can possibly be dangerous in large amounts. Eagle Rock Dental Care always supplies patients with the best quality filling type. We use a compound that is always safe for your mouth. To top it off, the compound we now use to fill cavities is made of a substance that adheres to your teeth. This means we can make a smaller hole and you have a lower risk of developing gaps in the seal between your tooth and the cavity.
Should Old Silver Fillings Be Removed?
That’s up to you. The silver metal that was once used to fill cavities is called amalgam. There are a variety of metals that make up amalgam. These include silver, mercury, tin and copper. Small amounts of zinc, indium or palladium also may be used.
Right now, the FDA is looking into amalgam for dental use. The FDA approved it to be safe for children and adults not long ago, but many groups have asked them to delve into it even further to check again. The mercury is what is the cause for concern. You can see what the FDA has to say about Dental Amalgam here.
Dental amalgam contains elemental mercury. It releases low levels of mercury vapor that can be inhaled. High levels of mercury vapor exposure are associated with adverse effects in the brain and the kidneys.
Metal vs Mercury Free Fillings
Composite fillings, like what we use here at Eagle Rock Dental Care, have physical properties that are closer to your tooth’s structure. Their bonding proprieties reduce decay which means we can make a much smaller hole for the filling than we could before. It restores the tooth to a more natural appearance as well.
The metal shimmer of the amalgam fillings were very aesthetically noticeable in years past. Granted, silver fillings are harder and can support more chewing pressures, but metal has properties that expand and contract with temperature changes. If your metal filling changes shape you could risk opening the seal to your tooth allowing air, food and buildup underneath the filling. You may not notice this until something about it causes you pain. Also, no expanding metal filling means no risk of future tooth fractures as a result.
If you’re at all concerned about your silver amalgam fillings, give us a call to set up an appointment and we can walk you through your options based on how your current filling looks today.