If you have a cavity, it's important to go into your dentist so that they can clean out the decay and place a restorative filling. Dental fillings can be made out of materials like silver amalgam, ceramic, composite, or gold. If you aren't sure which kind of filling to get, you should get talk with your doctor and familiarize yourself with the pros and cons.
Dental amalgam is a mix of silver, tin, mercury, and copper. It's been used in the dental field for a long time and can last you many years with proper maintenance. One of the greatest benefits of silver amalgam is its affordability. Costhelper says that for one or two surfaces, a filling may only cost $50 to $150. And if you have dental insurance, silver amalgam fillings are sometimes covered.
Amalgam fillings are not a good option if you have various other metal fillings in your mouth. You could experience oral galvanism. Oral galvanism happens when the saliva acts as an electrolyte between different metals in your mouth, and you can experience a shock-like feeling or an allergic reaction.
The greatest benefit of ceramic fillings is their natural-looking appearance. If you don't want people to see metal fillings in your mouth, then ceramic is a good bet. The downside is that ceramic fillings may be more expensive since a dental technician may be needed to prepare the material. While ceramic is durable, it's not quite as durable as gold or amalgam, so it may not be a great option if you grind your teeth at night.
Composite fillings are resin fillings—often a compound of ceramic and plastics. These fillings are becoming a popular choice because they cost less than ceramic fillings and they are more aesthetic than amalgam fillings. The main downside is that they can be prone to staining, so they may not be the best choice if you like staining foods and beverages.
Gold is incredibly durable and one of the most bio-compatible materials. Gold can be a great option for posterior teeth or if you have an allergy to an amalgam metal. Compared to other filling materials, gold doesn't wear down opposing teeth as much with wear and tear. However, like amalgam, some people aren't keen on the look of gold.
Talk to your dentist today if you need more information on fillings. They can help you find the material that's best suited to your budget, health, and aesthetic preferences.
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