Chances are that if you are a young adult or older, you have had at least one tooth filled with an amalgam filling. Also known as mercury fillings, dental amalgam, or silver fillings, nothing can disguise these dark spots that mark your dental history right on your smile. Amalgam fillings last years, but they also break and chip and must get replaced. Our Edgewood, KY dentists can safely replace your amalgam fillings with tooth-colored fillings. We can also fill your new cavities with these dental fillings that blend seamlessly with your natural teeth.
Tooth-Colored Fillings: The Painless Process
Tooth-colored fillings are just what the name says: dental fillings that are the same color as your tooth. They are also known as composite resin fillings after the blend of materials they are made from. These white fillings are used to fill small to medium-sized cavities and protect them from further damage. If we find cavities during your routine dental cleanings and exams, we will determine whether a tooth filling is sufficient to repair the decay. If so, we’ll set up a quick office visit for your tooth-colored fillings.
At your visit, our Edgewood, KY dentists will first match the composite resin to the color of your tooth. Then, he will administer anesthesia to you with The Wand. This method of controlled anesthesia is painless and doesn’t produce any lingering numbness afterward.
When you are comfortable, Dr. McMahon prepares your tooth for the filling by roughening it a bit and then applying a conditioning agent that helps the composite stay on your tooth. Next, Dr. McMahon will shape the composite putty-like material onto your tooth until it molds to the natural shape of your tooth. Then, he will bond the composite to your tooth and harden it with a special light. The composite chemically adheres to your tooth, creating a strong bond. Last, he will polish the area so that it shines just as if it were a natural part of your tooth!
Tooth-Colored Fillings vs. Amalgam Fillings
Mercury free: Tooth-colored fillings are mercury free, which is safe for those concerned about mercury leaking out into their bodies. They are also a safe alternative to mercury fillings for patients with metal allergies.
Strong and durable: You may have heard in the past that white fillings don’t last as long as silver fillings. Thanks to advances in modern dentistry, improvements in the material allows tooth-colored fillings to serve your smile well for many years. During your regular checkups, we’ll monitor your fillings to make sure they are in good condition.
Preserves your healthy tooth structure: Because composite resin bonds to your tooth, it can strengthen your tooth and save more of the healthy portion of your tooth than a silver filling, which requires drilling.
Although white fillings can be more expensive than amalgam fillings, most people find that it’s worth it for aesthetic reasons. If you need your silver filling replaced with an aesthetic filling, let the Edgewood, KY dentists handle it for you with tooth-colored fillings. Contact us for your appointment by calling 859-474-7830 or sending your request through our online form. We can’t wait to make your smile healthier and more beautiful!