amalgam dental fillingsNo one likes to have cavities. The time spent in the dentist’s chair, and the discomforts of having the cavity drilled are serious arguments for good oral hygiene. In addition to the hassle and pain, no one wants a mouth full of silver fillings. Dr. Zadeh, a Beverly Hills dentist, does not use these silver amalgam fillings for several reasons.

Many patients wish to avoid silver amalgam fillings because these dental fillings contain trace amounts of mercury. If you have silver amalgam fillings, there is no need to rush out and have them removed. Silver amalgam fillings are perfectly safe because the mercury is bonded to the other ingredients in the filling. Contrary to what you may have heard, the mercury does not leech out of the filling, and the only way to release it is to superheat the filling. Even though the silver amalgam fillings have been proven to be safe, Dr. Zadeh does not use them because he believes that the other materials available are superior, both in appearance and functionality.

Silver amalgam dental fillings are durable and inexpensive, but that is where their advantages end. The silver color of the fillings is unattractive, particularly if the fillings are on the front teeth or teeth that show when you talk or laugh. Further, many people associate silver fillings with cheap dental work. As a result, Dr. Zadeh prefers to use cast gold fillings, porcelain fillings, or composite resin fillings. The cast gold fillings are even more durable than the silver amalgam fillings, and they look expensive. Porcelain and composite resin fillings blend with the color of your teeth, so no one will know you have a filling.

In addition to the unattractive silver color, silver amalgam dental fillings require a larger area of the tooth to be drilled out than some other types of fillings, which can weaken the structure of the tooth. Amalgam fillings are also prone to expanding and contracting with heat and cold, which can cause them to crack the tooth over time. Finally, amalgam fillings can cause an allergic reaction in a small percentage of patients.

If you need a cavity filled or a tooth repaired, ask Dr. Zadeh about your options for dental fillings. The filling that Dr. Zadeh will recommend depends of the location of the cavity, the size of the cavity, and other factors such as whether you have the tendency to grind your teeth.