Should I have my amalgam fillings replaced with tooth-colored fillings?

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That depends! If you are worried about the mercury content in amalgam fillings, many studies have shown that there is no risk associated with the amount of mercury used in amalgam fillings. They are perfectly safe, and there is no reason to replace them if this is your only concern.

On the other hand, amalgam fillings can expand and contract over time, doing damage to the remaining tooth structure by causing cracks, seepage, and crevices where new decay can grow. In addition, all fillings erode over time and will need to be eventually replaced. If your amalgam fillings are old and worn, you can replace them with tooth-colored (composite) fillings for a better appearance.

Amalgam fillings can also cause teeth to look darkened and discolored. Natural tooth material is translucent, allowing the darker amalgam to show through the tooth, giving it a gray cast that some people dislike. If you have amalgam fillings that you want to replace with composite fillings to improve the appearance of your smile, the dentist will examine the condition of your current fillings and discuss the pros and cons of replacing them for purely aesthetic reasons.

If you're worried about the condition or appearance of silver amalgam fillings, call our Elk Grove dental office today and schedule a consultation to determine if you are a candidate for restoration with composite fillings!

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Dr. Peter Ngai, DMD & Dr. Penny Phipps, DDS