If your dentist discovers that you have a cavity during your routine dental check-up, it’s important to address the tooth damage quickly and have your cavity filled to prevent more severe issues. Cavities are small holes in the structure of your tooth that result from tooth decay, commonly caused by poor dental hygiene or excessive consumption of sugary and starchy foods. Nearly all children and adults will experience a cavity in their lives, and there are typically two options for fillings: tooth-colored dental fillings and metal fillings. The question is, are tooth-colored fillings better?
Why Do You Need to Fill Cavities?
Dental fillings repair the damaged structure of your tooth to restore your tooth’s health, stability, and strength, which benefits the overall health of your mouth and teeth. What happens if you don’t fill your cavities? A cavity seems like a small problem, and it may start out that way — but cavities expand, enlarge, and deepen to wreak further damage to your tooth. What begins as a small problem could develop into more severe tooth decay that requires more extensive restorative dentistry treatment to be repaired. Filling your cavities is preventative.
The Difference Between Tooth-Colored Fillings & Metal Fillings
Tooth-colored dental fillings are made with composite resin, a high-quality plastic material that begins as a soft, pliable liquid that easily molds to fill your cavity. Once hardened, the composite resin has a durable surface with a sheen that looks like your natural tooth enamel. Traditional metal fillings are made with metal amalgam, an alloy of mercury that is comprised of mercury, silver, tin and cooper.
The Benefits of Composite Dental Fillings
Many patients’ preference for tooth-colored dental fillings is based on appearance: Composite resin fillings are dyed to match the natural color of your teeth, so the filling blends in with your natural smile. Tooth-colored fillings are undetectable, so no one will know that you had a cavity. Metal fillings are not discreet. If you opt for metal amalgam fillings, you have to live with visible dark silver tooth fillings, which stand out against the white of your smile. Some patients also have mercury sensitivity, which makes metal amalgam fillings potentially problematic for them. Metal amalgam is typically 50% mercury, which poses concerns for some patients who worry about the potential exposure and toxicity.
ABOUT YOUR MANSFIELD, TX, DENTISTS:
Dr. Jones and Dr. Harris of Mansfield Dental Associates rely upon their years of experience, training, and skill utilizing advanced technology to offer you expert dental care at each and every visit. If you would like to schedule a consultation, then call 817-473-6227. We proudly welcome patients from Mansfield, TX and the surrounding areas, including South Arlington, Kennedale, Southeast Ft. Worth, Alvarado, Midlothian, and more.