Amalgam (Silver) Fillings | Gallatin TN
Dental Amalgam is a commonly used dental filling that has effectively been used in dentistry for over 150 years. It is a mixture of mercury with at least one other metal.
Advantages of Amalgam Restorations
There are many advantages to choosing amalgam restorations. Amalgam has many advantages over other restorative materials, such as low cost, strength, durability, and bacteriostatic effects. Amalgam is used in dentistry for a variety of reasons. It is relatively easy to use and manipulate during placement; it remains soft for a short time so it can be packed to fill any irregular volume, and then forms a hard compound. Amalgam possesses greater longevity than other direct restorative materials, such as composite. On average, most amalgam restorations serve for 10 to 12 years, whereas resin-based composites serve for about half that time. However, with recent improvements in composite material science and a better understanding of the technique-sensitivity of placement, it should be noted that this difference is decreasing.
Disadvantages of Amalgam Restorations
There are a few disadvantages to amalgam restorations. They are not tooth-colored materials and are grey or metallic in color. The placement of an amalgam filling may require the removal of some healthy tooth structure to achieve a strong and stable filling. Larger amalgams can actually weaken the remaining tooth. Amalgam fillings contain metal and may conduct hot and cold more than a non-metal filling. Amalgam restorations do contain trace amounts of mercury.