While most people know that metal fillings contain mercury, many don’t realize that silver amalgams are not the only source of this dangerous substance in their mouths. The trace amounts of mercury found in drinking water and food can combine with the mercury in the fillings to cause heavy metal poisoning in the body. Metals are also correlated with several other diseases, including Alzheimer’s and periodontitis, which have been linked to toxic metals like lead. Studies have also shown a link between mercury exposure and an increased risk of developing kidney disease or heart attacks.
At Town Center Dental, we only use mercury-free fillings and restorations for our patients. While some older types of restorations include mercury in their amalgam material, ours don’t. Replacing your silver fillings with composite resin fillings that are free of mercury will help to lower your risk of getting mercury poisoning or experiencing any adverse health effects.
Why Is Mercury a Problem?
When placed in direct fillings or crowns, mercury can leak out of the tooth and enter your bloodstream. From there, it can travel throughout the body and cause significant health issues. It can even cause infertility and other reproductive problems.
Placing mercury fillings on the teeth can also damage and weaken the tooth structure. Decay can quickly begin to develop around the old metal fillings, leading to further tooth structure loss and the need for more treatment.
Placing metal fillings requires the removal of healthy parts of the tooth structure, so patients are bound to experience some discomfort during the procedure.
Many patients also experience sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures after receiving a metal filling. Dentists today can avoid mercury entirely using state-of-the-art techniques and rely on safer alternatives for cavity treatment.
The Benefits of Mercury-Free Dentistry
Today's patients want healthier choices, and many are seeking treatment from dentists who practice mercury-free dentistry. Traditional metal amalgam fillings contain approximately 50 percent mercury, which places patients at risk for several potential health problems. We can restore teeth by filling cavities using high-quality tooth-colored resin or porcelain materials while keeping our patient’s comfort in mind. Since these tooth-colored materials are bonded to the natural tooth structure, patients can enjoy all the benefits of modern restorative dentistry.
Resin restorations are solid and durable, offering long-lasting results. Unlike traditional metal filings, they do not expand and contract in response to changes in temperature, so this type of restoration is less likely to fracture and allow bacteria to enter the tooth.
We practice mercury-free dentistry because it is best for our patients and their dental health in the long run. Visit Town Center Dental at 301 E Cook St, Ste F, Santa Maria, CA 93454, or call (805) 925-2652 for the best dental care.