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Silver vs Tooth Colored fillings

Fillings: Silver vs. Tooth-Colored

By: | Tags: | Comments: 0 | May 9th, 2018

Dentists use silver or tooth-colored fillings to fill up a decayed portion of your tooth. The filling is a restorative material to prevent further damage to the tooth.

Silver vs Tooth Colored fillings

(Pixabay / ExplorerBob)

The silver filling is a mixture of metals, which include silver, mercury, tin, zinc and copper. The natural-looking, tooth-colored filling is made from plastic and glass particles.

You and your dentist have a choice between the two filling materials. The following are advantages and disadvantages of each:

Silver fillings


  • Treatment takes less time, which means less discomfort for the patient and lower cost
  • Requires only simple tools for installation
  • Fillings are stronger and better able to withstand pressure from biting and chewing
  • No long-term safety risks


  • The fillings may expand or contract due to the fluctuation of temperature, resulting in long-term damage
  • More tooth structure needs to be removed as a preparation for the filling
  • Patient may experience sensitivity to hot or cold food or beverages after the filling is placed
  • It takes longer for the filling to harden
  • The fillings contain traces of mercury

Tooth-colored fillings


  • There is no health risk associated with the tooth-colored fillings
  • They blend well with the natural teeth because they can be color-matched
  • Patients have less discomfort after the procedure
  • Teeth are less sensitive to hot or cold food or beverages than they are with silver fillings


  • They are more expensive than the silver fillings
  • They require more skill to place
  • The filling material can be stained with coffee, tobacco and other dark-colored drinks (and it does not respond to teeth-whitening products)
  • Less sturdy than silver fillings

Most dentists today prefer tooth-colored fillings over silver fillings because they look more natural and cause patients less discomfort. At Felt Family Dentistry, we use only tooth-colored fillings for our patients.

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