What’s In An Amalgam Filling And Do Dentists Still Use Them?

It’s commonly known that amalgam fillings (also called silver fillings) contain mercury, hence the debate about whether they are safe to use of not.  But what other ingredients are in an amalgam filling?

What’s In An Amalgam Filling?

When an amalgam filling is placed in the tooth, it is soft and can be moulded to the right shape by the dentist.  The filling will begin to harden within a couple of minutes and will reach it’s full strength after a few hours.  In order for amalgam to have the correct consistency, it is made up of a number of different metals.  Amalgam fillings typically contain 40-50% mercury with the remaining 50-60% being made up of a metal powder.  The metal in this powder is a combination of:

  • Tin
  • Silver
  • Copper
  • Indium
  • Zinc.

Do Dentists Still Use Amalgam Fillings?

Many dentists still use amalgam today despite it’s unsightly metallic appearance.  The reason for this is that amalgam is an extremely strong material.  It’s not unusual for amalgam fillings to last more than 10 or 20 years, compared to a composite filling which will only last for about half that amount of time.  Nowadays, amalgam fillings are only used Tooth With An Amalgam Filling In Ittowards the back of the mouth where they can’t be seen and where the extra strength of a metal filling is needed due to biting pressure.

Mercury fillings are banned in some countries including Norway, Sweden and Denmark.  This is mostly due to concerns that the excess mercury has on the environment if it ends up in the sewers instead of being disposed of in the correct manner.

Conclusion

Mercury fillings are still used today by many dentists all around the world.  Amalgam is a cost effective and strong material to use to fill teeth.  They also tend to last much longer than their composite resin counterparts.  Even though a metal filling may be stronger, many people still choose to have composite fillings placed due their aesthetic appearance.

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Disclaimer

Any information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to substitute advice from a qualified dental professional. Only qualified dental professionals can provide an accurate diagnosis and treatment based on your specific condition. No warranty is made with the information provided here.

Comments

  1. because they pay about 50cents for an amalgam capsule and charge 100$ to 120$ for a filling ,its called greed

  2. I had a metal filling for 22 years and had no problem at all… My dentist encouraged me to remove it and put composite filling to restore it and after ten times going back to her with multiple problems I experienced after that,I ended up losing the tooth… I believe she just wanted to do root canal but I could not afford one… It’s all about money and greed these days,no one cares about people any more, it’s called business…. That’s why they use composite fillings these days to keep the business going…. Don’t ever remove a metal filling if you have one! Don’t fix it if it ain’t broken!!!!

  3. amalgam fillings leak mercury vapour one of the most toxic poisons on the planet , we can actually see the mercury vapour coming off of the fillings with a gold miners light a device designed specifically to recognise mercury. Plus amalgam fillings can form a battery in your mouth electrocuting and poisoning you. There is no magic when it comes to amalgam fillings, mercury is very corrosive so when it is mixed with other metals it corrodes them and this is then shaken and dentistry was under the false delusion that the result was chemical bonds being formed between the mercury and other metals , problem is they got it wrong !!!! no chemical bonds are formed and the result is that amalgam fillings are not inert hence the reason we can see the mercury vapours coming off the fillings with the gold miners light . Never let them put mercury fillings in your mouth they are extremely poisonous and will ruin your health.

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