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What Is A Composite Filling?

Trying to choose between amalgam and composite fillings can be a challenge, especially if you don’t have enough information about them and the differences between them. While in the simplest terms amalgam fillings are made of a combination of metals and composites are a resin and plastic compound, there’s more to them than that. Each has their own advantages and disadvantages, and we’ll be touching on those in this article.

What Are Amalgam Fillings?

These fillings have been around for a long time, and are comprised of a mixture of tin, copper, silver, and mercury. Mercury is the primary component of this mixture, which is surprising to those who know of mercury’s reputation as a poison. When combined with the other ingredients, however, mercury is rendered harmless and durable. This type of filling first became available in 1895.

What Are The Benefits of Amalgam Fillings, And The Drawbacks?

  • Benefits
    • Time Tested: With a track record going back over a century, they’re know to be reliable.
    • Inexpensive: Composites tend to cost more than Amalgam fillings.
    • Long-Lasting: These fillings last an average of 10-15 years, so replacements are rare.
  • Drawbacks
    • Distinct: Their metal coloration makes them impossible to miss against tooth enamel.
    • Allergies: It’s rare but some people experience allergic reactions to amalgam fillings.

What Are Resin Composite Fillings?

This form of filling was invented in the 1960s and consists of a blend of plastic and ceramic compounds. These fillings mimic the semi-translucent look of natural teeth and thus are almost impossible to spot alongside natural structures.

What Are The Benefits of Composite Fillings, And The Drawbacks?

  • Benefits
    • Blend Right In – They’re nearly identical to nature teeth, and thus blend right in.
    • Solid Adhesion – Their composition ensures that they adhere cleanly to your existing teeth.
    • Preserves Your Tooth – Less drilling is required to put these in place, so more of your tooth remains.
  • Drawbacks
    • More Time Required – These fillings take long to put in than amalgams, but last longer.
    • Insurance – Due to the higher cost of these fillings fewer insurance companies cover them.

What Type Of Filling Is Right For Me?

Ultimately the decision of which of these will be the right choice to fit your dental needs is going to be between you, your dentist, and your insurance company if they’re paying. Composites are the popular choice in modern dentistry due to their durability and natural appearance, but amalgams may be required in some cases.

If you’re considering getting fillings done its time to get a consultation with a professional to reach your final decision. Dr. David Pendleton at the Rockdale Smiles Center works closely with the Rockdale TX community to provide exceptional dental care. Call today and set up an appointment for a check-up and examination to take the first steps towards resolving your dental concerns. A life with beautiful, pearly white teeth is in your future, seize it today with Rockdale Smiles Center.

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Dr. Beau Blankenship, DDS Under the guidance of Dr. Beau Blankenship, Sabal General Dentistry brings dental care to families in and around the Rockdale, TX area with over a decade of experience. As a dental surgery graduate of the University of Texas Health Science Center, he focuses on building patient relationships that last a lifetime.

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