Amalgam (silver) dental fillings have been used successfully for generations. But as dental materials become more advanced and durable, options like composite (white) fillings are becoming more popular.
Which one is better? Here are some pros and cons of different types of Encino fillings and what you ought to know before committing to one over the other.
Lifespan and Durability
Silver fillings can last well over 10-20 years, as long as you care for your teeth properly. Several years ago, newer white fillings were known for lasting less time. But the good news is that modern composite and resin materials are more durable than they were in years past. Today you can expect white fillings to last just as long (or longer) than a traditional silver filling.
Isolation During Installation
Some of us have extremely heavy saliva flow. And that’s a good thing! But if you’re getting a dental filling somewhere in the back of your mouth (near a saliva gland) it may be extremely difficult to isolate the tooth and keep it completely dry during the appointment. If that’s the case, it might not be possible to place a white filling. But silver fillings can be placed even if the environment is wet/moist.
Invasive vs. Non-Invasive
The placement of fillings into your tooth structure is a critical process. Silver does not bond to enamel, so healthy structure must be cut out in a way that allows the amalgam to be wedged into the tooth, where it hardens and essentially retains itself. This method removes sound tooth structure in addition to cleaning out the decay.
On the other hand, composite fillings bond closely with tooth structure. We’re able to clean out the cavity and place the filling, preserving a maximum amount of enamel around the decayed area. As such, they’re smaller and less invasive.
Have a cavity? Get a minimally invasive white filling at Encino Dental Studio today!