10th January 2018

Should I Replace My Amalgam Fillings With White Fillings?

According to the Oral Health Foundation, around 80 of British adults have at least one filling. On average, every adult has around seven fillings. Fillings are generally used to treat cavities and can help to maintain the tooth and protect it from damage. The decaying tooth material is removed and then replaced with a filling that helps to restore the tooth structure, seal off any gaps and prevent bacteria from damaging your tooth and pulp.

Getting your fillings checked is an important part of your dental check-up. Faulty fillings can lead to the root of your tooth being exposed to bacteria which can be very painful and, if not treated, may lead to the loss of your tooth. Fillings can last a very long time, but people sometimes opt to replace them.

When the time comes to replace your fillings, you may want to think about changing them to white fillings. Tooth-coloured (also called ‘composite’) fillings are very popular for cosmetic reasons as they are less visible than the darker amalgam fillings. However, there are some scenarios where your dentist might advise against replacing your amalgam fillings with composite or white fillings.

The benefits of white fillings

The main reason that people choose white fillings is that they look more natural and are less visible than amalgam fillings. For this reason, white fillings will often be used for the teeth that are visible and closer to the front of the mouth.
People often choose to replace their amalgam fillings with white fillings if they are concerned about the mercury content in their fillings. Amalgam fillings are made up of a combination of silver, mercury, tin and copper. Although there is no cause for concern about the mercury content in amalgam fillings, some people prefer to avoid them.

Like amalgam fillings, direct composite fillings can be completed in one visit to the dentist. Your dentist will remove the damaged tooth material, clean the area and then apply a soft composite material to your tooth. This will then be hardened using a special blue light. Composite fillings are very strong if they are placed by an experienced dentist and created using the best quality materials.

When a white filling may not be recommended

Sometimes if a tooth has either had a very large filling or has lots of decay, or if there are moisture control issues, it may not be suitable for a white filling. In this situation, your dentist may recommend an amalgam restoration, an inlay or onlay, or a crown (sometimes referred to as a ‘cap’ instead). Inlays, onlays and crown restorations are prepared in surgery by your dentist. An impression is taken of the prepared tooth and the opposing teeth, and these impressions are sent off and made at a laboratory to fit your tooth perfectly.

If you’d like to discuss the possibility of replacing your amalgam fillings with white fillings, book an appointment with your dentist or dental hygienist today!

View our full range of cosmetic dentistry treatments in Warrington.

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Mike White
Mike White
2024-01-29
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2023-12-15
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2023-10-27
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2023-06-30
Can’t speak highly enough of this practice and in particular Lauren. 2 years ago I walked in and was so nervous I cried just as the sight of the chair. Her and the staff have been so patient and understanding and have worked with me to overcome my phobia. This week I had a filling and was absolutely fine, my family couldn’t believe it. Reception staff are lovely and really accommodating too. So glad I found them, I don’t dread the dentist anymore.
David Partridge
David Partridge
2023-05-10
A really Five Star Dental Practice! Upon arrival I was greeted by their most friendly welcoming receptionists. it seems nothing is 'too much trouble' to them. Gavin is similarly very friendly and the surgery is kitted out with the most high-tech modern equipment. On my first visit Gavin examined my teeth and explained my options to me giving me his recommendation for treatment and reasons why. Their Co-ordinator prepared a detailed quote for my treatment and went through it in detail with me, ensuring I understood everything; she had plenty of time for me as a patient. From the outset I had complete confidence in entrusting them with my dental care and the final results are truly amazing. Gavin and Richard could not have been more professional and my treatment was made as painless as possible. Dental Solutions provide a truly outstanding service and I thank them for my new 'long lost' smile and renewed confidence, especially when dining out and talking with people. I can't recommend them too highly.
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Carole Dodwell
2023-05-08
A first class experience from start to finish. Despite being fearful of visiting the dentist, Gavin put me at ease with his gentle unhurried manner. I was surprised at how relaxed I actually felt undergoing treatment for a crown and the removal/replacement of front teeth veneers. Having felt self conscious about my front teeth for a long time, I decided to have my old veneers replaced. The results were amazing and far exceeded my expectations. What Gavin achieved was nothing short of a work of art, boosting my confidence tenfold. The practice itself is very welcoming, the customer service excellent and the staff are all very friendly and kind. I cannot recommend this dental practise highly enough.
Nick Halliwell
Nick Halliwell
2023-04-28
I recently needed some urgent treatment and after trying a couple of dentists in the area, dental solutions were the only dentist that agreed to see me, genuinely nobody else showed any interest in helping me. The receptionist I spoke to initially was super compassionate and understanding and did all she could to get me in asap. I saw Lauren for all of my appointments, and I’ve now had: a composite filling, root canal and emax crown and just yesterday had a wisdom tooth extracted. I don't know what Lauren does but I have had zero pain or discomfort with any treatments during and after. I'm extremely happy with the results of her work. She definitely knows her stuff and filled me with the utmost confidence whilst in the chair! I literally cant find any fault with any of the experiences I have had so far. They go the extra mile and do it with a smile. What more can you ask for?! Definitely my dentist for the foreseeable future! Thank you Lauren and everyone!
Pete Taberham
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2023-04-07
Had my initial consultation with Lauren, truly professional and extremely friendly. She explained all my options in detail and following discussions opted for veneers and can't wait to see the end result.
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