Dental fillings are an important part of caring for your teeth. A filling prevents a cavity from getting larger and destroying a tooth. A filling can also stop an infection from developing since it seals the hole in the tooth's enamel. You should get a filling while the cavity is still small rather than putting off dental work. You can choose between a resin or amalgam filling. Here's how they compare.
Resin fillings have a white color, and they're made of plastic and ceramic. Amalgam fillings have a silver color, and they are made of a mix of metals that are bonded together with mercury. Mercury plays a critical role in the formation of an amalgam filling because it makes the metal pliable enough to work with.
While you can get either filling in any tooth, some teeth are better suited for a particular filling. If your filling will be in a front tooth, then a white resin filling is a good choice because it will blend in better. If the filling will be in a molar, then your dentist may prefer amalgam because it is harder when it cures and more durable for chewing and grinding. Amalgam fillings are also easier to install in back teeth since moisture isn't a concern. Resin needs a dry environment in order to cure properly.
You'll care for both fillings the same way. The only difference between the two is the day you have them placed in your mouth. A resin filling cures quickly, so you can eat as soon as your mouth is no longer numb. However, you may need to choose soft foods for several hours to give an amalgam filling time to harden sufficiently. Your dentist will let you know when you can chew on your new filling depending on where it is located in your mouth and the type of filling used.
Amalgam fillings are less expensive than resin fillings. Your dental insurance may only pay for resin fillings in front teeth where your filling would be visible. If you're paying out of pocket, you may have more choices in the type of filling you can have placed in your mouth if you want to control appearance. You might even want gold. Your dentist will help you decide if the material you want is a good match for the tooth that needs it.
Recovery from getting a dental filling is usually quick, although you might have some soreness in the area for a while. If you continue to have pain or if the filling seems to bother you, then let your dentist know in case the filling needs to be adjusted. You can also visit websites of local dentists to find more info.