Problems with Amalgam

Disadvantages of an amalgam filling

For almost 150 years dentists have used amalgam, or silver fillings, to repair teeth. However, there are some distinct disadvantages to silver fillings.

An amalgam is a combination of elements that can include silver, tin and copper mixed with mercury.

The metal is not very stable. Over time, moisture and temperature changes make the metal expand and contract. When the filling pushes against your tooth, it can cause fractures or chips.
This expansion can lift the filling, creating a gap that allows bacteria to seep under the filling.The metal can contract, opening a gap that also allows bacteria into the tooth.This expansion and contraction stresses your tooth and could cause it to break.Biting puts significant force on a silver filling and, as it ages, the filling can crack and break.Silver fillings do not match the natural color of your teeth, and the fillings can turn black and unsightly.Because a silver filling does not bond to your tooth, it must be locked into place. This requires that we remove more healthy tooth structure than with other types of fillings.An amalgam filling might cause you to be sensitive to hot or cold for a short time.Over time, there can be discoloration where the filling meets the tooth.Some patients are allergic to the metal used.

We now have several options for restoring your tooth with natural-looking materials that will enhance your smile and save more healthy tooth structure.

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