When it comes to fillings, dental patients have a choice between metallic amalgam fillings that have been around for 150 years and relatively new, resin composite fillings that have been in wide-use since the 1990s. To give you a better idea of what type of filling is right for you, we’ve listed some of the pros and cons of each filling type.
Amalgam fillings are commonly called “silver fillings” but are really made from a mixture of silver, mercury, tin and copper. Amalgam is typically thought of as the strongest and most durable filling material. Moreover, amalgam is usually less expensive and can be used to fill cavities quickly.
The big downside to amalgam is its appearance. That’s why dentists hardly ever use it on front teeth that are easily visible.
Resin composite fillings are made of ceramic and plastic compounds. Because resin composite looks like a natural tooth surface, this type of filling has been very popular for front teeth. However, resin fillings are not as durable as amalgam and aren’t always the best option for tough, grinding molars. Moreover, resin is harder to place than amalgam and can be a more expensive option.
In the end, the decision about which filling to get is up to you. Both have their benefits and their drawbacks. Of course, the best option is to take care of your teeth on the front-end and never require a filling. Daily brushing and flossing can go a long way in preventing cavities and keeping your mouth healthy.