Do Composite Dental Fillings Last Longer Than Amalgam Fillings?

Do Composite Dental Fillings Last Longer Than Amalgam Fillings?

August 1, 2022

Tooth decay is a global problem that affects billions of people. Tooth decay goes beyond dental aesthetics and affects your oral health and overall health. Most people will deal with tooth decay because of poor oral hygiene or poor eating habits. In other cases, people might have underlying issues such as xerostomia that can lead to tooth decay.

Dental fillings in South Lake Tahoe, CA, are amongst the best solutions that help treat tooth decay. If you receive dental filling treatment from our dentist near you, you have a better chance of salvaging the tooth since cavities will destroy the tooth structure, eventually causing tooth loss.

In any case, several types of dental fillings can be used to restore your teeth, such as composite and amalgam fillings. They are both excellent options (obviously, this depends on your needs and preferences). But before we know about the benefits of composite fillings, let’s get acquainted with their use.

What Are Fillings Used For?

Tooth decay happens subtly and takes years before you experience any symptoms. The enamel (the white covering of the tooth) is a sturdy substance made of 96% minerals. So, they have to be exposed to acids over several years for you to have significant decay. The reason is simple; your enamel gets restored each day when you brush your teeth with fluoridated toothpaste and eat teeth-building foods.

But if the amount of minerals the enamel loses is much more than what is being replenished, then enamel erosion begins. If this continues, cavities (holes) form on the teeth. Always know that those decayed parts of the tooth must be removed to prevent further decay.

That’s why you need dental fillings in South Lake Tahoe, CA. Once you have a cavity, our dentist near you will remove the decayed part and then use a filling to build up the tooth.

Are Composite Dental Fillings Safe?

Patients and dentists opt for composite resin fillings as a better alternative to silver or amalgam fillings. The issue most patients have with amalgam fillings are mainly poor aesthetic appeal and mercury. But, there have been some claims that composite resin could cause other health concerns.

Composite resin fillings have three components, resin matrix, inorganic fillers, and coupling agents. The main concern comes from the resin since it contains Bis-GMA, a compound made from BPA (Bisphenol-A). BPA is a monomer that is said to produce similar effects to estrogen in the body.

The main concern is that BPA is an endocrine disruptor (stop or inhibits the proper functioning of hormones) and can cause the following issues:

  • Disrupted hormone levels
  • Heart conditions
  • Cancer
  • Brain and behavior issues

Irrespective of the concerns, no study or evidence points to the fact that BPA found in fillings can cause any of the above health issues. So, as it stands, there is nothing to worry about when it comes to using composite resin fillings. Interestingly, you are at more risk of being exposed to higher levels of BPA when you use plastic cups, canned products, etc.

7 Benefits of Composite Fillings

Composite fillings are among the best options when you are seeking dental filling treatment. Look at their benefits:

  1. They Are Aesthetically Pleasing

Composite fillings are white, which means that they are tooth-colored. So, they will fit right in with the rest of your pearly whites, increasing your dental aesthetics.

  1. Can Be Repaired

If you have composite fillings, you can expect them to chip, wear out, or chip after some years. Our dentist can clean the area and repair the composite resin if this happens.

  1. Hardens Within Seconds

After our dentist places the composite filling, a special light is placed in your mouth over the filling to help harden the composite resin. The hardening process takes less than a minute.

  1. Fewer Cases of Tooth Sensitivity

If you compare composite resin fillings with amalgam fillings, you will realize that very few patients will complain about tooth sensitivity. The resin acts as an insulator against extreme temperatures, thus reducing tooth sensitivity.

  1. They Are Not Toxic

If you already have amalgam fillings, you might be concerned about the mercury, which causes several dangerous health issues. However, composite resin fillings are not toxic.

  1. Don’t Need Much Drilling

Our dentist will need to remove a significant amount of enamel to fit an amalgam filling. But composite fillings need much less space, so removing a huge portion of your enamel will not be necessary.

  1. They Are Durable

The technology used to make composite resin fillings have made them sturdy. They might not last as long as amalgam fillings, but they can serve you for more than seven years or more with proper care.

Are you interested in composite resin fillings? Contact us at Tahoe Dentist, and we would love to help you.

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