We are a mercury-free practice; however, many people have silver/mercury fillings in their mouths from years past. These fillings are not particularly pleasing to the eye, and we know that by unavoidable design, silver/mercury fillings ultimately result in weakened tooth structure. Tooth-colored composites and porcelain inlay and onlay restorations create fillings that are beautiful (or unnoticeable) and strong, thanks to new technologies.
Disadvantages of Silver Fillings
Silver fillings have many drawbacks. The edges of silver fillings can wear down, become weak, or break. This results in the tooth not being protected and lets cavities get started once again. With age, the metal of a silver filling expands, contracts, and can split.
Silver fillings are a mercury containing alloy. They can corrode, leak, and cause stains on your teeth and gums. Fortunately, silver fillings can safely be replaced with tooth-colored restorations.
Advantages of Tooth-Colored Restorations
Composite resin restorations are bonded to the teeth, creating a tight, superior fit to the natural tooth. Such restorations can be used in instances where minimal tooth structure has been lost.
Porcelain restorations are also bonded to the teeth creating the same superior, tight fit and natural appearance, while at the same time offering the superior strength needed for larger restorations. These restorations are recommended where a significant amount of tooth structure has been lost. The goal of inlays/onlays versus crowns is minimally invasive dentistry; i.e. preserving more tooth structure while providing the strength to support the biting forces generated when chewing.
The result of either composites or ceramic restorations is the same: a beautiful, healthy smile!
Replacing Silver fillings with a Tooth-Colored Restoration
You can have your silver fillings replaced with tooth-colored restorations. This process generally requires only one appointment depending on the treatment recommendation of Dr. Gamber.
When replacing an amalgam with a composite restoration, we will:
- Remove the old filling and any excess decay
- Restore with a tooth colored composite restoration in a single office visit
When replacing an amalgam with a porcelain restoration, we will:
- Prepare the tooth
- Take a digital impression of your teeth with our CEREC system
- Design and mill the permanent restoration
- Bond the tooth in place with bonding cement and a curing light
- Check your bite and polished the tooth