Dentist in McAllen, Texas - Serving the Entire Rio Grande Valley

Opening Hours : Monday to Thursday - 8am to 5pm
  Contact : 956-682-6356

Amalgam Free Dentistry

Why Our Dental Team Delivers Dental Care Without Amalgam

Through modern day technologies of dental adhesion, resins and state-of-the-art ceramics, the newest bonded restorations will be close to matching nature in durability, comfort, function and look. Using these new materials, it is possible to bond teeth together again, practically restoring them to their original toughness but without the invasiveness of complete-coverage crowns. Generally, metal fillings may be replaced by approaches that are safer than mercury/silver amalgam fillings. It is, therefore, possible to maintain the healthy, leftover tooth structure, rather than grinding it down for a crown.

Almost everything wears away, and your silver fillings are no exception. They endure stress-filled and significant biting forces daily, and as they get older, they split, leak and may result in damaging fractures on teeth. Over time, metal amalgam fillings can actually absorb water, causing them to swell and even break free from the teeth. When this happens, your tooth is more vulnerable to tooth decay and tenderness.

Mercury/Silver fillings share some other important detractions that need to be considered when it’s time for you to swap your restorations:

• Silver fillings are much less appealing than natural-colored fillings. Think about it, they don’t in the least resemble a natural part of the tooth.

• Amalgam grows and contracts whenever exposed to cold and hot extremes inside your mouth. The constant growth and contraction through temperature may initiate cracks as well as fractures in your teeth. There may not be any sort of symptoms for a while, but these teeth could become very sensitive as the fracture increases or opens when you bite down or chew food. It’s not abnormal for patients to come in questioning the way they broke their own tooth when they had been eating something soft like a banana or slice of bread. What they don’t know is that the tooth more than likely had a fracture in it long before it finally came apart.

• Silver fillings that are under continuous chewing force are at risk of metal weakness or flexing and bending failure, a concept which can be understood and demonstrated by repeatedly bending a paperclip until it breaks.

• Metal fillings are harder and far less flexible than the teeth they’re wedged into. The longer they are on the teeth, the greater force they place on the rest of the weak outer surfaces of the tooth bringing about cracks and fractures.

• Metal fillings are not glued to the cavity. They just sit in the tooth and react under pressure to split the tooth apart, just like a metal wedge is required to split logs into firewood.

• A microscopic gap surrounding the filling edge exists from the moment your silver filling is plugged into the tooth; and within this gap, constant corrosion and leakage takes place. This gap is big enough to allow harmful bacteria and food particles to enter in over time and lead to tooth decay at the border between the filling and the tooth. Composite fillings, however, are essentially bonded to the tooth preparation area and seal the borders closed from invading bacteria.

• To be able to get a tooth ready for a composite filling, the tooth can usually be treated considerably more gently and with less healthy tooth structure needing to be removed. And thus, the dentist can maintain the highest possible amount of virgin tooth structure as possible

• Silver fillings necessitate drilling undercuts (think carving out a pumpkin) as well as the removal of larger healthy portions out from the tooth in order to keep the mercury amalgam repair from falling out given it is not bonded right to the tooth. These types of undercuts may also compromise the tooth as fillings get bigger and relegate that tooth to subsequent cracking in the future. These cracks could be significant resulting in crowning the tooth to restore it or perhaps catastrophic cracks bringing about extraction of the tooth.

• Composites, with their opportunity to be conservative and applying their gluelike qualities, may strengthen and guard against fracture. Through intercepting the potential for cracking prior to experiencing the symptoms of hot/cold sensitivity and biting pain, innovative conservative treatment options including natural-colored restorations or porcelain-bonded restorations are actually protecting against the unwanted effects of toothaches and broken teeth.

• Finally, many dentists say that, bonded natural-colored restoratives are probably safer compared to classic fillings, given that they don’t include any mercury. Although the American Dental Association (ADA) states the usage of mercury in metal fillings is harmless, there is an ongoing discussion within the dental sector regarding the negative effects of these mercury amalgam fillings. Many European countries have prohibited the usage of mercury amalgam fillings in order to avoid any sort of hazards connected with mercury.

Given the list of negatives associated, and potentially associated, with mercury amalgam fillings, it becomes clear why patients are directing Dr. Riley and Dr. York to be PROACTIVE about extraction of mercury fillings as opposed to being REACTIVE and holding off until the tooth cracks or develops decay under the amalgam plug.