There are a variety of different types of materials that can be used to fill cavities in the teeth including the following:
- silver amalgam
- glass ionomers
Some types of fillings are better suited for certain conditions. When trying to decide which type of filling is best suited for you, you need to weigh the following factors: location of cavity, severity of decay, cost and insurance coverage. Your dentist is the best person to help you decide which type of dental filling best suits your needs.
Gold fillings are very sturdy, non-corrosive and can last up to 15 years, with proper care. However, they are much more expensive than silver amalgam fillings and require more than one dental visit to be fitted correctly. Silver amalgam fillings are also very strong and sturdy, however many individuals do not find them to be aesthetically pleasing. In addition, they are more likely to expand and contract and to cause a tooth crack as compared to other types of fillings. In addition, many individuals worry about the long-term safety of silver amalgam fillings since they contain Mercury: a known neurotoxin. Composite fillings are an attractive option because they can be made to closely match the color of your teeth. However, composite fillings are not as durable as silver amalgam fillings and are more expensive. Ceramic fillings are made of porcelain and are also a very aesthetically pleasing option. They are also very durable. However, ceramic fillings cost more than silver amalgam fillings and can wear the opposing teeth if the porcelain becomes rough. Glass ionomers (acrylic fillings) often last for less than five years but are a good choice for children if their teeth are changing. They can also release fluoride which helps to prevent tooth decay.
For addition information about the different types of dental fillings or to determine which type of dental fillings is best suited to your needs, talk to your dentist today.
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