Out with the old and in with the new: you’ll be hard pressed to find a dentist today who offers their patients amalgam fillings. For several reasons, one reason is that it’s an out-dated form of dentistry that was first used 150 years ago. Another reason is the possibility that the mercury contained in amalgam fillings is harmful to your health.
A topic of debate.
Some scientists say it’s not detrimental; others say everyone should have their amalgam fillings removed. The thing is though, it depends entirely on you.
There have been cases where doctors have referred patients to the dentist to have their amalgam fillings removed and replaced. The flip side is those who’ve had amalgam fillings for decades without any problems. If you are unsure, it is always best to come in to BlueSpa Dental. One of our dentists can assess the health of your mouth and the state of your fillings and discuss with you what your best option is.
Replacing Amalgam Fillings with Tooth Coloured Fillings.
If you’ve got amalgam fillings you may remember the painful drilling of your teeth before the amalgam was placed in the hole. The problem with amalgam fillings is that they don’t completely cover and protect the tooth. In fact, one would be hard pressed to say that an amalgam filling does protect the tooth.
Unlike more modern fillings, decay can still form under an amalgam filling, other problems that have occurred because of amalgam fillings are:
- Sensitivity to extreme temperatures.
- Amalgam fillings can crack a tooth: this happens when an amalgam filling either expands or contracts (depending whether it’s hot or cold).
Acracked tooth poses all sorts of problems:
One problem is that you could swallow your amalgam filling—a filling which contains a substantial amount of mercury.
Another problem is that a cracked tooth can mean you either need a dental crown or an extraction depending on how bad the crack is. If your tooth cracks and the crack doesn’t go below the gum line there’s a good chance that your tooth can be saved with a crown. If, however, the crack goes beneath the gum line it is more than likely that the tooth will need to be extracted.
Tooth Coloured Fillings at BlueSpa Dental.
Not only are tooth coloured fillings healthier than amalgam fillings, they are also stronger, more durable and aesthetically pleasing.
Tooth coloured fillings will generally go unnoticed because they match the colour of your natural teeth. The white fillings are usually used for teeth that need filling in the front of the mouth, or the teeth that can be seen when you smile.
The tooth coloured filling is made of composite and glass ionomer—it is soft material that is hardened by a blue light. Before the blue light is used, the soft material can be moulded and shaped to match the look of your natural tooth.
Once the tooth coloured filling has been set, it must be kept completely dry.
For more information on our tooth coloured fillings, to book an appointment at our conveniently located dental practice in Melbourne, please do not hesitate to contact us.