There are a variety of dental filling materials available today. Gold and silver fillings used to be the most common fillings since the early 19th century but recently the most common fillings have become tooth-colored composite resin. However, there are other fillings to choose from depending on your needs. Being aware of the strengths and weaknesses of each filling will help you decide which dental filling is right for you.
Gold: Gold is the strongest filling material available. It is long-lasting, durable and is often the treatment of choice for back teeth, especially if the patient is a bruxer. Bruxing is the clenching and grinding of your teeth which puts undue stress and pressure on dentition and can lead to fractures, cracks, and breaks.
Silver: Silver amalgam fillings are a mixture of tin, zinc, copper, silver, and liquid mercury. The safety of silver fillings has long been questioned due to the mercury content. Silver fillings are also long-lasting and durable, and are less expensive than gold fillings. Silver amalgam fillings expand and contract due to temperature changes and can eventually cause cracks in the tooth.
Composite resin fillings are a plastic material that is mixed with powdered glass. They are white and blend with surrounding dentition. They have become the treatment of choice for anterior teeth. Today, composite fillings are strong enough for back teeth, too.
Porcelain: Ceramic fillings are commonly porcelain. Porcelain is also white in color and has similar properties as natural teeth. It is esthetic and durable. However, porcelain fillings can wear down opposing teeth.
Glass ionomer: Glass ionomer fillings can be a good choice for filling children’s primary (baby) teeth when necessary. They release fluoride which helps prevent tooth decay, and in many cases they last less than five years.
About Your Reno Dentists
Dr. William Wager, Dr. Brian Evans, and our highly experienced team at Wager Evans Dental are devoted to our patients and their families, and dedicated to providing first-rate dental care in a comfortable, inviting environment. Located in Reno, we proudly welcome residents from Spanish Springs, Sparks, Incline Village, Dayton, Fernley, and all surrounding communities. To schedule a consultation or your next dental appointment, visit our office, or contact us today by calling (775) 829-7700.