- March 7, 2016
For centuries, lead was the metal of choice when it came to constructing water pipes.
All over the world, engineers used lead because it was easily bendable without breaking. The only problem, as you might have already guessed, is that exposing drinking water to lead is extremely dangerous to human health, causing a wide range of terrible conditions, including birth defects and even death.
People just didn’t know how dangerous the practice really was until it was too late. Once a safer alternative was found, most of the world moved on.
The same could be said of those metal fillings inside of your mouth. While the American Dental Association hasn’t found any substantial link between the mercury used in most metal amalgam dental fillings, the truth about their drawbacks is becoming more widely known.
If you or a member of your family has ever been treated for a cavity in the last 50 years, then you might already know what I’m talking about.
Silver and Gold Are Pretty, But Aren’t Worth The Pain
While the mercury used to harden the other metals in the filling aren’t necessarily proven to be hazardous to your health like those old lead pipes, they certainly have their painful disadvantages. If you haven’t had any metal fillings, but are suffering from a cavity that needs treating, then ask one of your elders about it.
For starters, metal fillings are painful. Not to install, mind you, but to live with. As we transition from Winter to Spring, some days are bound to be colder or warmer with others. It’s the basis of cold-and-flu season, but it also causes chaos within the filling itself. Metals like silver and gold expand, or get bigger, when the temperature is warm outside. When the weather is cold, they shrink up.
Take a moment and imagine this going on inside of your tooth when this happens: The filling pushes your tooth apart from the inside when it is warm, then pulls it inward when it’s cold. Aside from improving your oral health, the entire point of fixing a cavity is to eliminate your toothaches, not create reasons for new ones to take place. For many patients, this pain is unbearable, and is a big reason why they choose to get natural-looking, amalgam fillings.
But the problems with metal fillings unfortunately don’t end there. After years of this pushing and pulling, the filling itself can actually wear out. This, obviously, is bad. Very bad.
It’s bad not just because it hurts, however. Pieces of the filling can actually break off and find their way throughout their mouth and your body.
And that’s not even the worst of it: If a filling breaks, it can break in such a way that’s too small for you to notice right away. The danger is that you’ll continue going about your days without a care in the world, and all the while food particles will build up beneath the cracked filling, becoming trapped between it and the underlying tooth.
Over time, those food particles will become putrid, or rotted, and will accelerate the growth of harmful bacteria. It won’t take long at all for that bacteria to secrete enough acids to rapidly decay the tooth beneath filling, which completely eliminates all of the work you’ve done previously while making the problem even worse.
Metal-Free Fillings Are Pain-Free Fillings
Instead of those unsightly, painful, and potentially dangerous metal fillings, I use composite resin. It’s just as strong as metal fillings without any of the drawbacks. Plus, it will match the shade of your natural teeth, so you won’t have to be embarrassed every time you yawn or laugh at a joke!
Just as lead pipes were replaced by newer alloys and other, safer metals, metal-free fillings eliminate any of the worries and dangers I’ve written about in this post.
For more information about how the process works, and in greater detail, please visit this page on my website.
Quit letting those old fillings keep your smile from being all that it can be, and schedule your appointment with my practice in order to get the best that modern dentistry has to offer!
To make your appointment, please call me at 603-546-7460, or fill out this simple form to request an appointment online.