All you need to know about dental amalgam fillings

Dental amalgam fillings

Dental amalgam fillings, formerly known as lead, silver or mercury fillings, are among the oldest fillings used by dentists for more than 100 years.

The amalgam filling consists of a mixture of minerals and is characterized by its longevity and less cost than other types of fillingsComposite fillings or gold fillings.

Silver-coloured dental amalgam filling
Silver-coloured dental amalgam filling

Dental amalgam, which is sometimes called a silver-coloured filling because of its color, is a mixture of mercury, silver, copper, tin and zinc. It is used to restore dental cavities after removing decay. Dental amalgam contains nearly half of its weight, 50% of which is mercury.

Advantages of using dental amalgam fillings

Dental amalgam filling is not the only filling material available, but this material has certain advantages compared to other materials such as Optical fillings (composite fillings) for example:

  1. Dental amalgam fillings are usually easier to apply than optical fillings.
  2. require Composite fillings Dryness of the application site that the doctor works on, this is difficult when children and those with special needs who may have difficulty sitting in a dental chair and its ability to harden quickly can make treatment less stressful for them.
  3. Dental amalgam fillings are characterized by their durability and durability, and a review of several studies found that optical fillings may have twice the likelihood of failure compared to dental amalgam fillings.
  4. Dental amalgam fillings are stronger than Composite resin fillings This strength makes dental amalgam fillings a good choice for restoring the chewing surfaces of molars.
  5. Dental amalgam fillings usually cost less than cosmetic fillings.Dental amalgam filling is easy to apply

Dental amalgam filling defects

Among the most common disadvantages when using amalgam:

  1. Tooth preparation requires the dentist to drill and remove more tooth structure to place an amalgam filling than with other types of fillings.
  2. The presence of metal sensitivity in some patients, although rare, may cause them to react badly to amalgam.
  3. They are very noticeable and have a non-cosmetic color, especially when the filling is near the front of the mouth where it may appear when you are laughing or talking, and even on the back teeth if your mouth is wide open.
  4. happening dental fractures This is due to the ability of the amalgam to expand in response to thermal changes.
  5. Some dentists have stopped making amalgam fillings in their offices.

Steps for applying amalgam filling

When you visit your dentist, he will take several steps in preparation for filling your tooth:

  1. The tooth is numbed with a local anesthetic.
  2. Once the tooth is numbed, the filling is prepared and placed, taking into account the placement of the edges and points of contact with the adjacent tooth.
  3. If the filling is between two teeth, a tape called an abutment is usually placed to help position and shape the filling over the shape of the tooth.
  4. The amalgam filling takes up to 24 hours to harden so one should refrain from eating the filling until the next day.

After getting an amalgam filling, you may feel a slight sensitivity in your teeth for a few days. If you feel severe pain when biting, it may be due to contact between the new metal filling and the opposite tooth. Don't worry, the sensation will gradually diminish over the next few weeks.

If you have allergies or chronic pain when bitten, contact your doctor who will re-evaluate the height of the new filling and make adjustments if necessary.

Choosing between amalgam and composite fillings

Cosmetic Composite Filling They are the best option if you want the best natural looking restoration possible and the restorations are subtle but may not be as long lasting as amalgam fillings, although the quality of this material has increased in recent times.

Amalgam fillings will save you money and last longer
Amalgam fillings will save you money and last longer

Dental amalgam fillings are the best option if you are not concerned with appearance and care a lot about the longevity of the filling, it may also be easy to put these fillings for children or adults with special needs due to their rapid hardening.

The only way to understand what type of filling is right for you or your child is to book a visit to the doctor, we can guide you to the best specialists. Do not hesitate Contact us,Bimaristan center is your family in Turkey.

Is dental amalgam filling safe?

Amalgam fillings are a mixture of different metal elements including silver, mercury, tin and copper, and because they contain mercury, their effects on patient health and the environment raise controversy among some people.

Dental amalgam fillings are a safe and commonly used material. Regarding their mercury content, it is important to know that when combined with other minerals, they form a stable and safe material.

Scientific studies confirm the safety of dental amalgam fillings and that amalgam is safe and effective for filling cavities, agree American Dental Association and the World Health Organization based on extensive scientific evidence that dental amalgam is a safe and effective filling material.

she also says Alzheimer's Association The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Autism Society, andNational Multiple Sclerosis Society Amalgam does not pose any health risks.

As with any dental work you will always need to speak with your dentist about your individual situation in order to make the most informed decision.

mentioned Mayo Clinic Dental amalgam fillings are a safe and permanent option. They also point out that there are several types of mercury. The methylmercury in water that can build up in fish and lead to health problems if you eat a lot of it is not the same type used in amalgam fillings.

 Can dental amalgam fillings affect my health?

When the mercury in the filling is mixed with other metals it forms a solid that does not easily decompose.

After reviewing many Scientific studies The US Food and Drug Administration has found amalgam fillings to be safe for adults and children 6 years of age and older.

Although some people express concern about mercury vapor released from chewing amalgam fillings, the amount emitted is well below the permissible limits set by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the World Health Organization.

People may be at risk of developing an allergic reaction but in very few cases less than 1% of people who get dental amalgam fillings may have an allergic reaction.

Caries prevention

In the end, prevention is the best medicine and the best filling is not to fill your teeth, you can reduce the possibility of tooth decay and other dental diseases largely by:

  • Brushing the teeth twice a day btoothpaste Contains fluoride
  • Daily flossing
  • Eat a proper and balanced diet that limits sugary drinks and snacks
  • You can apply Gentle materials for mulch and gutters On your teeth in the clinic to prevent caries
  • Visit the dental clinic regularly


  1.  American Dental Association
  2. The Journal of the National Dental Association
  3. US Food and Drug Administration
  4. Metro East Dental Care

Frequently Asked Questions

Amalgam fillings are durable and effective, on average you can expect a filling to last about 15 years before needing replacement, but the length of time can vary depending on many factors, for example when grinding or pressing on their teeth the prognosis is worse.

Currently, there are millions of dental amalgam fillings in use and application in dental schools, clinics, and hospitals around the world. They are considered safe and stable, yet their use is still debated.

It is not recommended to remove or replace the amalgam filling unless the individual is allergic to the mineral components of the amalgam filling.

An allergy or hypersensitivity reaction to an amalgam filling is localized and relatively rare.

Mercury is present in less than 1% of the amalgam in the waste stream. To reduce this percentage, dentists use a device that reduces the amount of amalgam that leaves the dental clinic and enters the public sewage system.

If you are planning for treatment in Turkey
you can talk to us here.

If you are planning for treatment in Turkey
you can talk to us here.