Do you have silver fillings in your teeth? The shiny metallic fillings that many people still have are actually metal amalgam, a combination of silver, tin, copper, mercury, and other metals. Today’s fillings are made of a composite resin material that can be matched with your natural tooth color.
If you have one or more of the old metallic fillings currently in your teeth, you may be wondering if they are safe to stay there. Some dentists may even recommend replacing your old fillings with new ones. Are there really any health risks associated with metal fillings?
Potential Concerns About Metal Fillings
There are a few concerns about the safety of metal fillings. Those concerns are mostly due to the various metals they contain. Mercury is known for the highest risk of negative health implications of all the metals contained in fillings. The other metals contain a much lower risk of health issues, but are still a potential concern.
The important thing to note is that metal fillings, once placed and solidified, pose a much lower risk than then when they are in liquid form. The greatest exposure you may have had to these metals was when they were first placed in your teeth. There is not as much of a risk when it comes to leaving existing metal fillings in the mouth.
Current research shows no conclusive evidence that suggests replacing metal fillings is medically necessary.
Situations When You Should Replace Old Metal Fillings
Your dentist may recommend replacing old fillings when there are particular problems with them. Old fillings can sometimes become defective, loosen, or show signs of decay. If this is the case, it would be a good idea to replace them with new composite fillings. Failing fillings can cause cavities to worsen or lead to infection in the tooth. Deep decay or infection that spreads into the soft pulp of the tooth can require a root canal. This can all be prevented by being proactive about getting old silver fillings refilled.
You should absolutely have your metal fillings replaced if you have an allergy to any of the metals the filling contains. An allergic reaction can become serious.
Some people choose to have their silver fillings replaced for cosmetic reasons. They are less noticeable on back teeth, but if you have any towards the front of your mouth, you may wish to have them replaced with tooth-colored composite fillings that are less noticeable.
The Procedure for the Replacement of Metal Fillings
If you do decide to have your metal fillings redone, the procedure is pretty simple. Local anesthesia will be applied to numb the area and prevent any pain. Suction is used to remove the existing fillings. The tooth is then thoroughly cleaned and dried before the composite filling is placed. A special light is used to harden the fillings which are then buffed and polished.
Sachi & Co. Dentistry Makes it Easy to Replace Silver Fillings
If you need or wish to have your old metal fillings replaced, Sachi & Co. Dentistry can help. We make the process fast and easy. Whether for health or cosmetic reasons, restoration of your existing fillings has many benefits. Advancements in dental technology have made cavity fillings safer than ever, helping you preserve the health of your teeth for a lifetime.
Call 310-530-9893 today to schedule a consultation or make an appointment. We offer a wide range of dental services from preventive care to restorative procedures to help you maintain a healthy smile.