Manhattan, New York City
Metal dental fillings have been a staple of dental care treatments for decades, but the times have been changing in the last decade or so. More and more dental care practices are using composite/white dental fillings instead of metal fillings. There are compelling aesthetic reasons for this shift as well as major dental health reasons. The team at our Manhattan cosmetic dentistry practice would like to take this opportunity to look at both the aesthetic and health matters involved and explain why many patients want to replace their metal fillings with composite ones.
Aesthetic Problems with Metal Fillings
There are obvious aesthetic issues with metal fillings due entirely to their color. The dark gray and black appearance of metal fillings is a stark contrast to the whites of the teeth. That's why tooth-colored fillings are used in smile makeovers rather than metal fillings.
Dental Health Issues with Metal Fillings
The dental health matters surrounding metal fillings are more important than the aesthetic issues, however. For one, many metal fillings of the past contained mercury as part of their composition, a substance that's highly toxic.
In addition, these metal fillings can shift in size with fluctuations in temperature: in hot temperatures, the metal fillings can slightly expand; in cold temperatures, the metal fillings can shrink slightly. Though the change in shape is minor, over time this can actually cause small cracks and other damage to your healthy tooth structure.
Why White Dental Fillings are Superior
Our Manhattann cosmetic and restorative dentistry team is proud to offer composite fillings for numerous reasons. Obviously they blend in seamlessly with natural tooth structure when they are in place. In addition, these white dental fillings are ceramic rather than made of metal. They contain no harmful or toxic substances and they will not warp in high or low temperatures like metal fillings can.
Good Candidates for Dental Filling Replacement
The best candidates for dental filling replacement are people who have metal fillings but want to have smiles that are free from troublesome dark spots. These patients should be in generally good dental health and have realistic expectations about the replacement procedure.
The size of the existing metal fillings may be a factor for the actual treatment plan. Some tooth material must be removed in addition to the old metal filling for the tooth-colored filling to be placed. In some cases, the old metal filling may be replaced by a tooth-colored inlay or onlay, both of which are similar to dental fillings but replace a large amount of tooth material.
Other Dental Care Options to Consider
In addition to tooth-colored fillings, there are plenty of other options out there to keep in mind for excellent dental health. For examples, patients who are missing a tooth or multiple teeth may benefit a great deal from getting Manhattan dental implants, which will support dental bridges and dentures with remarkable stability. We'll be more than happy to look at all options for dental makeovers during your visit to our practice.
Learn More About State-of-the-Art Dental Care Treatment
For more information about dental fillings and the many ways that our dental care team can help you meet all of your dental health goals, be sure to contact our New York City cosmetic and restorative dentistry practice today. The entire team here looks forward to looking at all of your options for getting a healthy, beautiful smile.