White Fillings May Be Used Instead of Traditional Silver Fillings
People who want to keep their smile white may opt for white fillings instead of traditional silver (mercury) fillings when a filling is required because of tooth decay. Old silver fillings may also be replaced with white fillings to brighten up a smile. Many people who received the silver fillings as a child have successfully replaced them with composite fillings.
Benefits of White Fillings
- Composite fillings utilize a quartz-like material that is shaded to match the surrounding teeth.
- The filling is cured with an intense light one layer at a time and then the top surface is matched to the shape of the tooth and polished.
- Composite or white fillings match the tooth so that they look just like a natural tooth rather than appearing to be a filling.
- White fillings are strong and protect the tooth’s surface so that fractures are less likely.
Drawbacks to white fillings
White or composite fillings often cost more than the traditional mercury type because they are more time consuming and difficult to place. However, because they prevent fracture they may be more cost-effective in the long run.
Sometimes one can have onlays or inlays instead of using a composite filling, and these can also be very durable. If the decay is excessive, a crown may be the best option rather than going with a filling.