If you need dental fillings for your damaged teeth, the dentist will give you an overview of the available filling materials. Listen to this overview carefully because the choice of the filling material is significant. Below are some of the ways in which different fillings materials vary.
As you would expect, dental fillings vary in cost. This variation can be important to you if you are paying the costs out of your pocket. The price difference is also significant if you don't want to deplete your dental insurance limit. Amalgam filling (a mixture of mercury, tin, silver, and copper metals) is one of the cheapest materials. Filings made of precious materials, such as gold, are some of the most expensive fillings.
Dental fillings don't last forever. Some of them require replacements after a few years. The choice of material determines how long you have to replace your dental filling — assuming you take good care of it. For example, gold and amalgam fillings are some of the most durable — they can last as long as two decades.
Complications and Side Effects
Dental fillings affect people in different ways. The side effects and complications depend on materials, for example:
- Metal fillings trigger allergic reactions in some people
- Amalgam fillings expand and contract with changes in temperature — constant expansion and contraction can damage surrounding tooth structure
- Some materials, such as ceramic, are more likely to crack and require early retreatment
The dentist will give you an overview of the potential complications. Use the information to avoid or minimize the side effects or complications you fear.
Dental fillings have different applications. You can use dental fillings to:
- Strengthen weak teeth
- Fill dental cavities
- Build up damaged teeth
- Protect vulnerable teeth
- Improve dental aesthetics
As you can see, aesthetics is just one of the many benefits of dental fillings. However, many people still care for the beauty of their teeth even if they just want to strengthen them.
Again, the filling material determines the final appearance of the restoration. For example, metal fillings are some of the most obvious materials around. Ceramic materials typically mimic natural teeth — others won't spot your restorations easily if you have ceramic fillings.
The choice of dental filling material has far-reaching implications. Take your time to listen to the dentist and understand what you are getting into before choosing the best material for your case. Hopefully, you will get a long-lasting solution for your dental problem.
For more information about dental services, contact a local dentist.