Why You Might Want To Replace Old Dental Fillings

By Paul Walters

Have you had lots of cavities over the years? If so, the odds are your mouth is filled with those ugly silver colored fillings that can really mar the look of your mouth and even impinge on your smile, depending on where they are located.

These “amalgam” fillings are actually quite common, despite an ongoing controversy about the mercury that is used in making the filling material. While some people, including more than a few dentists, claim that this mercury can cause a whole bunch of different health problems, there is no definitive proof that these fillings are dangerous, according to the American Dental Association.

However, there are other reasons you might want to replace the amalgam fillings you already have. For one thing, newer and more aesthetically pleasing fillings now exist that can not only replace the old amalgams but also improve your bite in the process.


In addition, thanks to the latest in materials available to dental lab workers, these new restorations can last much, much longer than similar older caps and crowns. In fact, new tooth-colored fillings can last years or even decades, depending on the materials used, the tooth that is replaced, and the regularity with which you brush and floss.

Once you have your old fillings removed, your dentist can take an impression in his office, usually sending that impression to a lab. Alternately, he may scan the tooth electronically, using a state of the art instrument, then send that scan to the lab, where your restoration will be fabricated.

No matter what method is used at your dental office, many labs today will make a 3-D model of your mouth in their computer, allowing them to produce an inlay or an onlay that will fit into or onto your existing tooth perfectly. This incredible high tech process can save tooth structure and lead to a perfectly natural bite. As a result, a good number of dental offices today recommend that some patients with gaining silver colored fillings replace them partially or totally with these lab-created inlays. This process can be quite expensive, but porcelain fillings like these can last quite a bit longer than the old silver fillings, thus ultimately allowing you to keep your original teeth many years longer than might have been possible using the older dental filling materials.

Since the process of replacing old fillings with cutting edge inlays, onlays, and crowns can strain the budget, it might be better for an individual patient to consider replacing their old fillings over time. This is especially true if that patient has decent dental insurance, as most policies have rather low annual caps. So if you are in this situation, you probably will want to plan out your filling replacement schedule ahead of time with your dentist.

Once your new restorations are placed, there is a good chance your teeth will look like new. With the ugly metal fillings gone, you will be able to smile freely once more. Make sure to take great care of your new teeth, and they might just last you a good, long time.

About the Author: Paul Walters writes for several websites, covering topics including health, technology, and cutting edge technologies like

SoundTrack dental lab software




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