Some people may not even know what Amalgam filling is. This type of filling has faded out into history, and we don't use them as often anymore. However, if you are a person who has fillings done a long time ago, there is a high chance many of the fillings you have maybe Amalgam filling.
So what is Amalgam filling?
When the tooth is broken or a tooth cavity is found, the traditional dentist used silver/dark looking fillings called Amalgam to repair the damage. As the term suggests, the materials were an amalgamation of multiple metals such as mercury, iron, copper, silver etc.
This filling has a major drawback; 50% of the material is mercury. Imagine mercury in the thermometer expanding with temperature changes. This means Amalgam fillings are prone to expand and contract inside the tooth, resulting in tooth cracks and fractures. We see many patients visit our clinic with a broken tooth because of this.
If I have a tooth with the Amalgam filling, do I need to replace it?
It will depend on the size and location of the Amalgam filling. Small Amalgam filling may not pose a great risk, while larger Amalgam filling placed on the biting surface may. Your dentist can perform an assessment and provide treatment advice at your dental check-up.
What kind of fillings are used in modern dentistry?
The good news is, our dental clinic no longer uses Amalgam anymore. The newer and better dental filling is now available. It is called Resin Composite and GIC (Glass Ionomer Cement).
The amazing thing about this material is that it is tooth coloured (i.e. Tooth repaired will look like a natural tooth) and mechanically stable (i.e. no thermal changes). Most importantly, it will structurally bond to your tooth structure and strengthen your teeth.
If you wish to find out more in detail, please contact us on our phone 02 6767 1601