Are you aware that when having dental fillings, the type of material used can have a massive impact on your overall health? Mercury-based amalgam fillings contain mercury – one of the most toxic substances known to humankind. With increasing evidence to support why we need to reduce our exposure to this substance and its associated risks, many dentists are now opting for safer alternatives such as porcelain or composite resins mercury-free options. This blog post will discuss all the benefits of opting for mercury-free dental fillings and why we should encourage more practices offering these treatments. Keep reading to learn about the advantages of choosing these safe and effective dental treatment options!
What Are Mercury-Free Dental Fillings?
Mercury-free dentistry is a relatively new concept that has been gaining traction over recent years. It involves replacing amalgam fillings—made from a combination of metals containing hazardous materials, including mercury—with tooth-colored composite restorations. Mercury-free fillings are stronger, more durable, and produce a much better aesthetic result than their metallic counterparts.
The Dangers Of Amalgam Fillings
The primary benefit of mercury-free dentistry is that it eliminates amalgam fillings containing hazardous materials like mercury, silver, and copper. There are many harmful effects of amalgam dental fillings. These are a few of the more notable ones:
- Mercury vapors are released from these fillings over time, so eliminate them from your smile. This way, you can reduce your risk of exposure to this toxic material.
- Many people with amalgam fillings experience hypersensitivity to air and pressure changes due to the metal’s conductivity.
Switching to composite restorations is often helpful in reducing or eliminating these uncomfortable symptoms.
The Advantages Of Composite Restorations
Composite restorations are made of a plastic-based resin and glass mixture, making them both aesthetically pleasing and durable. This material is designed to match the shade of your existing teeth, allowing us to provide you with fillings that blend in seamlessly with the rest of your smile.
Composite fillings can be used for many other dental procedures, such as repairing cracked or chipped teeth and filling in gaps between teeth. They’re also much less likely to cause sensitivity issues than amalgam fillings, as they don’t conduct air or pressure changes like metal.
Long-Term Benefits Of Mercury-free Dentistry
While it’s easy to focus on the immediate benefits of switching to mercury-free dentistry, there are also some long-term benefits.
- Since composite fillings are much stronger and more flexible than amalgam fillings, they’re less likely to crack or chip over time. This reduces your risk of needing further dental work in the future.
- Additionally, since these restorations blend in with your existing teeth, they can also help maintain a natural smile for years to come.
The Bottom Line
The benefits of mercury-free dentistry outweigh the risks. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have young children, finding a dentist that practices this type of care is essential. With more and more people becoming aware of the dangers of mercury fillings, we will likely see them phased out entirely. In the meantime, research to ensure you get the best care for yourself and your family.
1. Are mercury-free fillings safe?
Yes! Composite restorations are made from a non-toxic combination of plastic and glass materials. This eliminates your risk of exposure to hazardous materials like mercury.
2. How long does it take to get a composite restoration?
The procedure typically takes one hour for each tooth to be filled. Discuss all details with your dentist before the appointment to provide the most accurate timeline.