If you are above a certain age, you most likely have a few metal fillings in your molars. While some people are self-conscious about the silver color in their mouths, most people don’t give their metal fillings much thought. However, there might be reasons beyond the cosmetic to replace these fillings. In this article, we will give you the facts about metal fillings so you can decide if replacing them is the right move for you.
Understanding the Popularity of Metal Fillings
The metal was the first material used to fill cavities. In the early and mid-1800s, mercury fillings started to become common in the United States and western Europe. Amalgam fillings, which are made using a mixture of metals, became popular as they were just as strong as mercury-only fillings but cheaper to produce. While metal fillings were effective and affordable, studies eventually showed that mercury could cause a variety of health problems.
A Better Alternative
Eventually, dentists began using nonmetal materials to fill cavities. A variety of materials can be used, but composite resin and ceramic are the most popular in the 21st century. Not only are these materials nontoxic, but they are also tooth-colored for a subtle look.
Is Replacement Necessary?
While modern amalgam fillings are typically produced using a small amount of mercury (or no mercury at all), even trace amounts of mercury can potentially impact your health. Replacing amalgam fillings with a nonmetal material is a simple procedure that will improve the look of your fillings while also guaranteeing a mercury-free mouth.
Whether you need a new cavity filled or are looking to replace your amalgam fillings, Mission Bend Family Dentistry can help. Call us at 832-895-5110 to schedule an appointment today.