Once a cavity develops, it needs to be filled. The filling of the hole within the tooth helps to prevent the spread of decay and salvages the remainder of the tooth material. Still, when it comes to filling a cavity, there are multiple options that you and your dentist can choose from.

One of the most popular materials used to fill a tooth is silver amalgam. Additionally, as cosmetic dentistry has grown in popularity, composite resin has become increasingly popular as a filling option.

Here are is a bit of information about silver amalgam and composite resin fillings to help in the filling selection process.

Silver Amalgam Fillings

Silver amalgam fillings are the traditional dark-colored fillings that have used by dentists for many years. The fillings are quite strong and can support the bite strength of even back teeth. As a result, silver amalgam fillings can fill a cavity in a tooth and provide the tooth with the structural support that it needs to function properly.

Still, the color of the amalgam fillings may be a problem for people who want to protect the look of their smile. The silver amalgam is made from metals. Not only is the material noticeable in the mouth, but it can also leak over time. This leaking can cause the teeth to become discolored. 

Additionally, silver amalgam contains mercury. Although these fillings are believed to be safe, many dental patients are concerned about the dangers associated with ingesting mercury. Some dental patients may have a mercury sensitivity or a metal allergy.

Composite Resin Fillings

Composite resin fillings are made from glass and plastic. The fillings are applied in a similar manner to composite bonding material. They are layered onto the compromised area of the tooth and hardened between layers with a high-output light. The fillings are subsequently shaped and polished.

Unlike silver amalgam fillings, composite fillings are white and blend well with the color of natural tooth material. Nevertheless, the composite resin fillings are still quite hard and durable. 

Many people may prefer the resin fillings for the aesthetic appeal, as well as the lack of metal and mercury within the fillings. As a result, some people have their silver amalgam fillings replaced by composite resin fillings, especially when the silver amalgam fillings are located near the front of the mouth.

If you have a cavity and would like to explore your filling options, schedule an appointment with a dentist at offices like Cherry Hill Dentistry LLC in your local area.