Dental Fillings Types: Amalgam vs. Composite

Dental Fillings Types: Amalgam vs. Composite

December 1, 2022

What Are Dental Fillings?

Teeth fillings are used to restore teeth that have been damaged by decay. There are several types of fillings, but two stand out– amalgam and composite. Amalgam fillings are crafted from silver, tin, and mercury. Composite fillings are made of a plastic resin and resemble your natural teeth in appearance.

The type of dental filling you receive will depend on the tooth’s location, the severity of tooth decay, and your personal preference. Amalgam fillings are typically used for large cavities or those that are located in difficult-to-reach areas. Composite fillings are often used for small cavities or those that are visible when you smile.

If you have a cavity, your dentist near you will clean the decay and place the filling material in the space. The filling material is then hardened with a special light. Once the filling is in place, your dentist will trim and polish it so it blends in with the rest of your tooth surface.

When Are Dental Fillings Used?

Teeth fillings restore teeth that have been damaged by decay. They cover up the decayed tooth part and prevent it from getting bigger.

You can also get dental fillings near you to repair cracked or broken teeth and to fill in gaps between teeth.
Fillings do not last forever, so they must be replaced every 10-15 years.

These restorations can be made from various materials, including gold, silver, porcelain, and composite resin, and your dentist will choose the best option.

Difference between amalgam and composite

There are a few dental fillings types that you can choose from, but the two most common are amalgam and composite.

  • Amalgam

Amalgam is durable compared to other fillings and can last for many years. One downside of amalgam is that it’s not tooth-colored, so it’s more noticeable than composite fillings.

  • Composite

Composite fillings are made to match the color of your teeth, so they’re less noticeable than amalgam fillings. They’re also less likely to fracture your tooth than amalgam fillings. However, composite fillings don’t last as long as amalgam fillings and may need to be replaced sooner.

Pros and Cons of Amalgam vs. Composite

Each type of filling has its pros and cons. Amalgam is less expensive than composite and can last many years. However, amalgam may cause tooth discoloration over time, which is not as aesthetically pleasing as composite.

Composite is more expensive than amalgam, but it matches your natural teeth’s shade. Composite is also less likely to cause tooth decay around the edges of the filling.

Before getting dental fillings in Oak Lawn, discuss with your dentist, as they will be able to help you know the pros and drawbacks of each filling and make a recommendation based on your individual needs.

Cost of Amalgam vs. Composite

Several factors can help you choose which type of tooth filling is right for you. One crucial factor is cost. Amalgam fillings are typically less expensive than composite fillings. The average cost of an amalgam filling is $125-$150, while the average cost of a composite filling is $250-$275.

However, insurance coverage may vary depending on your plan. It’s essential to check with your insurance provider to see what type of coverage you have for dental fillings.

Another factor to consider is the durability of the filling material. Amalgam fillings are designed from different metals, including mercury, silver, tin, and copper. This makes them strong and durable and can last several years with proper care.

Composite fillings are created with a mixture of glass or quartz filler and resin. They are not as strong as amalgam (silver) fillings and may need to be replaced more often. However, composite fillings can be matched to the color of your teeth, making them less noticeable than amalgam fillings. If you’re considering dental fillings, talk to your dentist about which type is right for you based on your preference, dental needs, and budget.

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