White Composite Fillings
Why We Don't Offer Amalgam Fillings
For aesthetic reasons, silver amalgam fillings are not appropriate in a cosmetic dentistry practice. They simply don’t look good. However, that is not our only reason for choosing not to offer them. Metal amalgam is an outdated material which can damage your teeth and the mercury it contains may pose serious health risks. Many dentists have chosen to stop using it, even those who do not practice cosmetic dentistry. Dr. Quigless chooses not to put his patients at risk and to offer only the most beautiful and healthy dental solutions.
Mercury in amalgam fillings
Silver amalgam fillings are made up of about 50% mercury. Mercury is a toxic heavy metal which can and does cause very serious health problems. Whether or not the mercury in silver amalgam fillings can get into your body and cause mercury poisoning is still a matter of debate, but we choose not to take that risk with your health.
Silver amalgam fillings can damage your teeth
What we do know for sure is that the mercury in metal fillings makes them unstable. It allows the fillings to expand and contract with exposure to heat and cold, and this damages the structural integrity of your teeth. It often eventually cracks the tooth. It can also allow food particles to get in under the fillings, causing decay.
When your fillings expand they can cause small fractures in your teeth, weaken your teeth and even cause substantial cracking and crumbling of your teeth over time. Small fractures are not visible and may be there for quite some time before they become painful, but they are doing damage all the while.
When your fillings contract they can let particles of food get into your teeth, causing decay to proliferate inside of your tooth and causing deep damage which can ultimately lead to tooth loss.
Silver amalgam fillings conduct heat and cold and can make your teeth sensitive to hot and cold foods and beverages.
Amalgam fillings may damage your health
We know that mercury vapor is released from metal fillings both when they are placed and when they are removed – also when you chew with them. Whether or not enough mercury is released or absorbed by the body to cause mercury poisoning is still a controversial issue. The risk should not be taken lightly. Mercury poisoning can cause:
- Birth defects
- Kidney damage
- Multiple sclerosis
- Mood swings
- Memory loss
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Dental problems including loose teeth, tooth loss, and gum problems
Metal amalgam and the beauty of your smile
As a cosmetic dentistry practice we only use materials which will produce the most aesthetically pleasing results. In addition to damaging your teeth and possibly your health, amalgam fillings are unsightly, and can stain your teeth. Even in the back of your mouth, metal-colored fillings are visible when you talk and laugh.
Dr. Quigless can replace your amalgam fillings with beautiful white fillings, restoring the beauty of your smile and preserving your teeth. To learn more please read our White Fillings page and our Questions about White Fillings. If you believe that you are in need of fillings, or if you are ready to have your old fillings replaced, please call our white composite fillings specialists today to schedule your free initial white composite fillings consultation with Dr. Quigless.
8083 Manchester Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63144