A silver amalgam filling is used to repair a tooth that is affected by decay, cracks, fractures, etc. The decayed or affected portion of the tooth will be removed and then filled with a silver filling.
There are many types of filling materials available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. You and your dentist can discuss the best options for restoring your teeth. Amalgam fillings, along with composite (tooth colored) fillings, are the most widely used today. An amalgam filling is more commonly used in the back teeth since the color is not as aesthetic as a composite filling.
As with most dental restorations, amalgam fillings are not permanent and may someday need replacement. They are very durable, and will last many years, giving you a long lasting smile.
Reasons for amalgam fillings:
Cracked or broken teeth.
What does getting an amalgam filling involve?
Amalgam fillings are usually placed in one appointment. While the tooth is numb, your dentist will remove decay as necessary. The space will then be thoroughly cleansed and carefully prepared before the new filling is placed. If the decay was near the nerve of the tooth, a special medication will be applied for added protection. The silver filling will then be precisely placed, shaped, and polished, restoring your tooth to its original shape and function.
It is normal to experience sensitivity to hot and cold when amalgam fillings are first placed, however, this will subside shortly after your tooth acclimates to the new filling.
You will be given post-care instructions at the completion of your treatment. Good oral hygiene practices, eating habits, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new fillings.
Our Views on Amalgam Fillings:
Many people have been concerned about the effects of amalgam on health due to its mercury content. There is no doubt high levels of mercury are poisonous; however, in the amounts present in dental fillings, it is not hazardous. Amalgam remains the longest-lasting, least expensive dental filling material available. To date, there have been no scientific studies that show amalgam is unsafe. Many reputable organizations such as the American Dental Association, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, The World Health Organization, The National Institute of Health, The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, the Mayo Clinic, and most, if not all, accredited dental schools fully support its use and safety. Please note that per the ADA, it is unethical for dentists to remove silver fillings for reasons of health.