Natural “Tooth-Colored” Composite Restorations

What are the different types of filling materials available?

There are bonded, non-bonded and partially bonded restorative materials available. Each have their own advantages and disadvantages.
Dental research has made many breakthroughs in biomaterials since the days of dental amalgams. Today, if you need a dental cavity restored, Lakeridge Dental can use different types of strong and durable composite resins that look much more natural and are much less noticeable than a metal restoration. Composite restorations can be very conservative, minimizing tooth structure removal and can bond together parts of severely broken-down teeth.

Non-bonded Dental Amalgams
Do dental amalgams contain mercury?
Yes, but the concentration of mercury today is significantly less than amalgams made 30 years ago.

What are the advantages of amalgam?
Excellent for use in patients who are uncooperative due to ability to set in less than ideal conditions. Children and those with mental or physical disabilities are excellent candidates. Much stronger than composite resins (white filling materials)

What are the disadvantages of amalgam?
Silver in colour, can tarnish to black over time.
Bonded Composite resin filling materials

What are the advantages of composite resins?
Beautiful, life-like, white fillings, highly polishable

What are the disadvantages of composite resins?
Need high patient cooperation as any form of moisture from saliva can inhibit the set and cause leakage. Leakage can lead to pain and cavities. The edges of the filling collect brown stains from coffee to red wine. They do not last as long as dental amalgams

Dentist Pro Tip:

If you have amalgam fillings and they are still intact, there is no reason to remove perfectly sound tooth structure. As well, metal amalgams are still appropriate in some clinical situations. If you are concerned about the mercury released from dental amalgams, it is important to note that the amount of mercury released during the lifetime of the filling is minimal to none. Most of the mercury is released upon placement and actual removal of the amalgam.
Contact us for more information about bonded fillings.

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