All of us know that the mirrors are made with amalgam but not everyone knows that it is successfully used in dentistry too. It is a part of the special composition for fillings. The mercury and silver alloy are mixed as a plastic mass that hardens inside the tooth cavity. This alloy also contain other metals like zinc, tin and copper. The amalgam appears as the result of the chemical reaction.
Filling cavities with the help of the amalgam fillings has its advantage and disadvantages. Among their advantages are:
- Simple procedure.
- Affordable price.
- The edge sticks tight all the time because the fillings material is getting wider while hardening).
- Long-lasting service (it will take decades to waste).
The disadvantages of the amalgam fillings are:
- The thin wall of the tooth can be broken in the process of filling. It may happen because of the different reaction of the hard tooth tissue and amalgam on temperature fluctuations.
- Their silver color. That is why the amalgam fillings are set up on the chewing teeth and will never do for the aesthetic teeth restoration.
Earlier the risk of mercury steams appearance was considered dangerous. But the research data proven that the amount of mercury extractions is too small to harm a patient’s health. Much bigger amounts of it people receive with food, air or nicotine smoke. There were no case of mercury intoxication or any complications after the amalgam filling ever diagnosed. There even exists an idea that amalgam was pushed away from the market to replace it by more expensive materials. Though it sounds like a conspiracy theory, the toxicity of the amalgam was intentionally overestimated and now it successfully comes back into the dentistry.
The amalgam fillings went through a certain development. They are stored in hermetic capsules that allow long-time storage. The material of the modern amalgam filling does not contain the combustion phase, that is why the surface of the filling will be the same smooth and shiny through years.