Durability of Different Filling Materials
I am commonly asked by patients what type of filling I am proposing to use. Will I be placing a silver amalgam (metal filling) or a composite resin (white filling)? And, when I explain that I only use the composite resin materials (white fillings), the next question is – do the silver amalgam (metal) fillings last longer than the composite resin fillings?
I was fortunate to graduate in 1989 from dental school. Right about that time, the composite resin materials and the adhesive systems for bonding the composite resins to tooth structure had just gone through a revolutionary shift. I lucked
in on an adhesive system (that I still use today) that has provided me with incredible reliability over the past 30 years.
Contrary to what many people believe, I don’t believe that silver amalgam (a room temperature alloy of silver powder and mercury) is toxic in most individuals. In fact, the great majority of individuals who have silver amalgam fillings have been served incredibly well by the filling material. I initially shifted to using composite resin materials exclusively because of one of the physical properties of silver amalgam: creep.