Are amalgam dental fillings safe?

dental fillings

You may have been to the dentist before and told them that you don’t want the black filling. This might have been due to a number of reasons that you honestly believed in, for example, the filling contains mercury which accumulates in the blood, the filling has an effect on your health, and so on.

These validate why you may request a different dental filling. However, there are even more reasons why your dentist may choose to use the black filling or as it is scientifically known, amalgam. Amalgam is an alloy of majorly silver and mercury and has many properties that make it a perfect material for filling a tooth cavity. These include;

  • strength
  • inertness
  • wear resistance
  • longevity.

These influence the common decision to use it to fill the back teeth which need more strength and do not require as much attention to aesthetics.

Before a material is approved for use by the different monitoring bodies, its safety has to be proven and so amalgam is safe. The mercury released from the fillings is less than that taken up from the environment and both these are minuscule and the effects are negligible if the amounts remain constant. This makes it a safe material in addition to the other qualities mentioned above. There are protocols for handling dental amalgam which ar followed by dentists to even further minimize the exposure to mercury when they are placing an amalgam filling or even when they are disposing of the waste.

The next time you visit a dentist and they recommend that the tooth is filled with amalgam, do not be anxious because dentists like all other healthcare providers have your best interests at heart.