Amalgam vs. Composite Fillings: What’s the Difference?

Amalgam Vs. Composite Fillings: What’s The Difference?

When it comes to dental restorations, amalgam and composite fillings are two commonly used materials. These fillings play a crucial role in addressing cavities and preserving the structural integrity of teeth. There are advantages and disadvantages to amalgam vs. composite fillings. We go over both to give you a better idea.

Hearing that you have a cavity is not something that we want to hear from our dentist in Ottewell. However, with developments in dentistry, there are various choices for tooth repair to consider. While traditional silver amalgam fillings were formerly the only option, most dental practices now provide composite resin fillings as well. However, they differ significantly in composition, appearance, and application.

Dental fillings are used to restore a tooth’s strength, structure, and appearance by replacing damaged tooth enamel. Despite being the toughest tissue in your body, dental enamel is susceptible to infection.

Amalgam Fillings

For almost a century, amalgam fillings, often known as silver fillings, have been a standard in dentistry. They are made up of a combination of metals such as mercury, silver, tin, and copper. The combination of these ingredients yields a long-lasting and low-cost filler material. Amalgam fillings are known for their durability and strength, making them ideal for use in molars and other teeth that are subjected to severe chewing forces.

Pros of Amalgam Fillings

  1. Durability: Amalgam fillings are renowned for their long-lasting nature, making them ideal for teeth that bear the brunt of chewing.
  2. Cost-Effectiveness: Compared to alternative filling materials, amalgam dental fillings near you are generally more affordable, making them a budget-friendly option for many patients.
  3. Quick Application: The placement of amalgam fillings is a relatively straightforward and quick process, requiring less chair time compared to some alternatives.

Cons of Amalgam Fillings

  1. Aesthetic Concerns: One major drawback of amalgam fillings is their noticeable silver colour, which can be unappealing, especially in visible areas of the mouth.
  2. Mercury Content: While the mercury in amalgam fillings is bound to other metals, some individuals express concerns about potential mercury exposure, although research suggests that amalgam fillings are generally safe.

Composite Fillings

Composite fillings are a popular alternative to amalgam, especially for those who prioritize aesthetics. Composed of a mixture of plastic resin and finely ground glass particles, composite fillings can be color-matched to the natural shade of your teeth, providing a more aesthetically pleasing result.

Pros of Composite Fillings

  1. Aesthetic Appeal: The ability to blend seamlessly with natural tooth colour makes composite fillings an excellent choice for visible areas of the mouth.
  2. Versatility: Composite fillings can be used for both front and back teeth, offering a versatile solution for various dental fillings in Holyrood.
  3. Conservative Preparation: Unlike amalgam, composite fillings require less removal of healthy tooth structure during the placement process.

Cons of Composite Fillings

  1. Durability: While composite fillings have improved in durability over the years, they may not be as robust as amalgam, especially in areas of the mouth with heavy chewing forces.
  2. Cost:  Composite fillings tend to be more expensive than amalgam fillings, which can be a factor for individuals on a tight budget.

Need Restorative Dental Care? 

Dental fillings are a standardized, yet effective treatment that can help you repair your smile. Talk to a dentist near you before you go ahead with anything; they’ll aid you in making an informed decision, whether you opt for the time-tested strength of amalgam or the aesthetic appeal of composite. 

Prioritizing your oral health through regular dental check-ups and prompt cavity treatment is key to maintaining a healthy and vibrant smile and ensuring that your results last. Schedule an appointment with us at Holyrood Dental today. 

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