What’s wrong with amalgam fillings?
When a tooth needs a filling, the tooth needs to be drilled to clear the decay. This weakens the tooth in a similar way to removing the lid off a tin can. The tooth actually flexes around the rim and ultimately over time, cracks can develop.
The problem is, that silver amalgam fillings are not connected to the tooth. They just sit very tightly in the cavity. So when the tooth flexes, there is little resistance to stop cracks developing. This is also true of the majority of white fillings, as they too, are not fully connected to the tooth.
In some cases cracks lead to decay, in other cases the cracks progress into the underlying dentine causing symptoms to cold, sweet or even pain on biting.
Just because the tooth does not have symptoms, does not mean that the tooth is healthy.
We undertake an assessment of every tooth with a filling to see if it is structurally compromised. This includes looking for cracks, measuring how thin the remaining cusps are, how wide and how deep the existing filling is. Evidence shows that if a tooth is structurally compromised then it is a matter of time before failure occurs. In some cases this failure could lead to the loss of a tooth.