We are a mercury-free practice. However, many people still have amalgam (silver/mercury) fillings in their mouths from years past. These fillings are not particularly pleasing to the eye, and we know that by unavoidable design, silver/mercury fillings can result in a weaker tooth structure. Tooth colored fillings can be directly placed or indirectly placed. Both direct and indirect can provide a beautiful and natural result. Porcelain or gold inlays and onlays are examples of indirect placement fillings. Porcelain inlays and Tooth Colored Restorations (onlays) create fillings that are not only beautiful (or unnoticeable) but also add strength to weakened teeth. These restorations are esthetically pleasing and very strong thanks to new bonding technologies. Examples of direct placement tooth colored fillings are resin restorations, glass ionomers and hybrids of resin and glass inonomer. Direct placement is completed at one appointment. Some tooth colored fillings can release fluoride over time, adding a protective layer to the treatment.
Advantages of Tooth-Colored Restorations
There are many advantages to tooth-colored restorations. Porcelain onlays are bonded to the teeth creating a tight, superior fit to the natural tooth. Such restorations can be used in instances where much of the tooth structure has been lost. The tooth remains intact and stronger. Tooth colored fillings are more natural looking than amalgam fillings (silver fillings) and usually more tooth structure can be conserved when preparing a tooth for a tooth colored filling versus an amalgam (silver filling).
The result is a beautiful smile!