Tooth Coloured Fillings – Not Just For Your Looks?

Aesthetically pleasing alternatives to amalgam fillings from your local Bristol dentist

We are all fortunate indeed if we manage to go through life without so much as a single filling. In fact, most of us will have had several fillings by the time we reach middle age.

The vast majority of these fillings will be of the amalgam variety, which, although offering a good level of strength, unfortunately are likely to detract from our appearance when we smile or laugh.

As well as the unappealing appearance of amalgam fillings though, a number of people have expressed concerns about potential health issues. This has been a debate that has been going on for a number of years, but it is generally recognised that, because amalgam fillings contain mercury, a highly toxic material, their use should be phased out over a period of time as suitable alternatives are found. However, it is only fair to add that currently, UK legislation still considers that amalgam fillings are safe to use, despite the growing concerns elsewhere.

Toxicity concerns

Despite amalgam fillings containing mercury, as noted above, they has been considered safe for some time. This has been more recently challenged though with claims that gases from the mercury are released when chewing food and that even in this very tiny amount, damage to health may be caused over a period of time.

Some medical experts have also expressed concerns that the mercury could be passed, via breast milk, to babies, resulting in some forms of disability. Concern has been to such an extent that some Scandinavian countries have banned its use altogether.

Amalgam Alternatives

Given that amalgam fillings are likely to be phased out, Beau Monde Dental Care of Bristol have, like many other leading dentists, taken the decision to offer patients an alternative to this unappealing looking filling. At our Bristol dental practice, we are now able to offer our patients white, or tooth coloured, fillings.

Whilst these have been around for a while, it is only recently that they have become improved enough for use in the rear teeth. Whilst older versions were fine for the front teeth, the chewing and grinding actions that the rear teeth are designed to do often meant that the filling simply was not strong enough.

Advances though, now mean that white coloured dental fillings are now suitable for almost all fillings. In cases where the filling needed is large, our experienced dentists may recommend that an inlay or onlay is used instead to give the tooth the extra strength needed to perform its task.

Not only does the use of this tooth coloured material mean that amalgam can be avoided but also that the exact shade can be made to match the existing tooth. Once it has been placed then, it is almost impossible to tell the difference between the natural tooth and the filling (or onlay/inlay).

If you are concerned about the use of mercury in amalgam fillings or would simply like to improve the appearance of your teeth with a tooth coloured filling, please give Beau Monde Dental Care a call on 0117 330 3495 and we will be happy to discuss the options.