White fillings and silver amalgam fillings are the two most popular tooth fillings used to cover up teeth damage. Both have their place as filling materials and there are situations where one is preferred over the other. The choice of a “better” filling depends on the type of decay, damage, and cost, among other factors.
Appearance wise, white fillings usually enjoy an edge over amalgam fillings. This is because white resin fillings look very natural and usually make the best contribution to a flawless smile. In contrast, amalgam tooth fillings look much less attractive due to them being made of metal. Moreover, it can look very odd if an amalgam filling is used on a tooth in the front of the mouth.
White fillings harden upon exposure to blue light, so once your visit to the dentist comes to an end, there is no need to wait before you are able to enjoy a nice meal. However, this is not the case with amalgam fillings. Tooth fillings of this sort need a few hours to harden; until then, you will just have to hold off on that lavish lunch!
It is important that the filling seal bonds with the tooth to provide protection against any new decay. Unfortunately, amalgam fillings not only expand and contract with the heat and cold, which can damage the tooth itself, silver fillings eventually corrode and leak, and can lead to staining. The fillings will eventually become anchored less strongly to the tooth, paving the way for more decay, and possibly, another cavity. Conversely, white fillings can bond more closely with the tooth, so the seal is very tight. The restoration seal is sometimes even stronger than the initial one.
In terms of cost though, amalgam tooth fillings are inexpensive and most insurers provide coverage for the expense. Therefore, getting a silver tooth filling won’t break your budget. However, white fillings made from resin are comparatively more expensive and it can be challenging to get insurers to approve such a claim.
Teeth are an integral part of one’s personality, so it is extremely important to choose a quality product for your smile when you need dental work done. Another point to consider is that various dental care practitioners have expressed their concerns over the safety of amalgam fillings, so it seems that white fillings, although pricier, are a safer option.
If you feel that such fillings are ridiculously expensive, then consider them a long-term investment. White fillings are durable and create a flawless smile; the extra expense would be worth it in the end.