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Posts for tag: fillings

By Bohle Family Dentistry
September 22, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: fillings  

Over the last century and a half millions of people have had a tooth cavity filled with “silver” amalgam. Perhaps you’re one of them. The use of this effective and durable filling has declined in recent years, but only because of the development of more attractive tooth-colored materials.

At the same time there’s another issue that’s been brewing in recent years about this otherwise dependable metal alloy: the inclusion of mercury in amalgam, about half of its starting mixture. Various studies have shown mercury exposure can have a cumulative toxic effect on humans. As a result, you may already be heeding warnings to limit certain seafood in your diet.

So, should you be equally concerned about amalgam fillings — even going so far as to have any existing ones removed?

Before taking such a drastic step, let’s look at the facts. To begin with, not all forms of mercury are equally toxic. The form causing the most concern is called methylmercury, a compound formed when mercury released in the environment combines with organic molecules. This is the form certain large fish like salmon and tuna ingest, which we then ingest when we eat them. Methylmercury can accumulate in the body’s tissues where at high levels it can damage various organ systems.

Dental amalgam, on the other hand, uses elemental mercury. Dentists take it in liquid form and mix it with a powder of other metals like silver, tin and copper to create a pliable paste. After it’s placed in a prepared cavity, the amalgam hardens into a compound in which the mercury interlaces with the other metals and becomes “trapped.”

Although over time the filling may emit trace amounts of mercury vapor, it’s well below harmful levels. You’re more likely to encounter “un-trapped” mercury in your diet than from a dental filling. And scores of studies over amalgam’s 150-year history have produced no demonstrable ill effects due to mercury.

Although it now competes with more attractive materials, amalgam still fills (no pun intended) a necessary role. Dentists frequently use amalgam in less visible back teeth, which encounter higher chewing pressures than front teeth. So, if you already have an amalgam filling or we recommend one to you, relax — you’re really in no danger of mercury poisoning.

If you would like more information on dental amalgam fillings, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

By Dr. Charles Bohle
October 09, 2014
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: paducah ky dentist   crowns   fillings  

Crowns or Fillings-Which is a Better Choice?

Crowns and fillings are both effective treatments used to save teeth that have composite fillings before and after suffered decay. The better choice of the two will really depend on the severity of the decay within the tooth.
Of course, a dental exam is necessary to determine which treatment will be best, but here are a few factors our dentists consider.
When are fillings used?
If a tooth has only minor decay, a filling usually is the best choice. A filling becomes necessary when a cavity develops; the decayed tooth matter must be removed in order to restore the  health of the tooth. In addition, a tooth that has suffered significant wear may benefit from a filling.Getting a filling is typically a simple procedure. The decayed tooth matter is removed and then a material-usually tooth-colored composite-is used to fill in the spaces. For many patients with cavities, fillings will be the proper treatment.
When are crowns used?
Crowns are used to provide strength and stability to a weakened tooth. A tooth that has become vulnerable due to decay may not be able to support a filling, in which it can be covered with a crown. In addition, a crown is usually placed after fillingsa root canal to ensure the tooth has the strength to stand up to chewing. To place a crown on a decayed tooth, one of our dentists will usually utilize filling material to create a larger and more ideal surface for the crown. Then, the crown is cemented to the tooth.
In all, the right treatment will depend heavily on the patient’s individual case. Patients who are experiencing cavity-like symptoms should call our office as soon as possible for best results or click here for an appointment.

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