So, composite resin vs. amalgam fillings, who would win? That is the question that this article will try and answer. This is important because both variations of the same service are pretty popular. And it doesn’t help that most dental clinics in the country have both of them in their service list. Since both dental fillings have their own set of pros and cons, it’s only suitable that this article does the same. In terms of composite vs. amalgam, it’s important that both sides of the stories are met. All of their flaws and exceptional qualities will be explored and compared.
Composite Resin vs. Amalgam
First of all, before we pit composite resin vs. amalgam fillings, it’s important to understand that both variations serve the same purpose. Both services aim to fill the damage done by tooth decay. They are dental fillings after all so it’s expected that both of them have the same function. This whole comparison will go over the advantages and disadvantages that one has that other doesn’t. So, let’s start with the former, composite resin.
When it comes to dental fillings, a composite resin one has to involve appearance. A composite resin filling is made out of a combination of ceramic and plastic. This gives it the advantage of being able to blend very well with the other teeth. Because of this, a composite resin filling is much more viable when placed at the front teeth. In addition, since they’re made out of flexible materials, a composite resin filling is capable of being shaped into any form of the teeth. This gives it the advantage of versatility as it is capable of fixing different kinds of issues regarding tooth decay.
So, in summary, here are the advantages of using a composite resin filling:
- Appearance – blends well with other teeth due to their color that gives them a natural look.
- Versatility – it’s much easier to be shaped and molded, hence it’s able to be placed in different forms of damage.
- A composite resin filling doesn’t also discolor the teeth it’s placed on.
As for its disadvantages, here are some to keep in mind of:
- Durability – when compared to amalgam fillings, a composite resin filling falls flat in terms of durability. It still falls victim to teeth grinding and has the tendency to chip if put under enough pressure.
- Longevity – a composite resin’s natural composition doesn’t have much in terms of longevity. It wears down faster than amalgam fillings and are susceptible to damage.
- Drier Mouth – a composite resin filling is harder to shape or apply if the area around it is not dry enough. This gives the dentist a harder time to apply the material.
- Price – when it comes to pricing, composite resin fillings are much more expensive. Keep this in mind the next time you’re trying to save money on the service.
Amalgam fillings have a longer track record than composite resin. It has been used by dental practitioners for more than a century. So, one can only understand that it’s pretty popular among the masses.
As for its material, amalgam filling is made out of an amalgamation of tin, silver, copper, and mercury. This gives amalgam fillings a metallic look in their finished state. Of course, this doesn’t bode well in terms of appearance. Everyone who takes a good look at your teeth will surely notice the metal fillings placed in it.
Here are some of its advantages:
- Price – amalgam fillings are pretty much one of the more cheaper dental fillings to date. It doesn’t ask for much and it’s effective in its function as a filling.
- Durable – amalgam fillings are much more durable than composite fillings. This is the very reason why most patients pick this material to be placed over molars.
- Track Record – amalgam fillings have picked up a long history of successful track records when compared to composite fillings. Most people stand by it and say that it’s worth paying the money for.
- Longevity – amalgam fillings are capable of lasting for 20+ years. It’s hardy structure and material allows it this much time.
Here are some of its disadvantages:
- Limited Shape – composite resin fillings are much easier to mold and shape. Amalgam fillings, on the other hand, only have a limited shape to follow. This doesn’t allow it to fit every damage that’s caused by tooth decay.
- Aesthetics – as mentioned above, amalgam fillings aren’t the best in the looks department. Don’t expect to come into the service with hopes that it’s able to blend well with the other teeth. It won’t.
It may seem that amalgam fillings have this one in the books. However, everything is not that easy. When you think about it, composite fillings may not be the toughest filling but it’s actually recommended by most dental practitioners. However, it does fall short of some of the benefits that amalgam fillings have.
To pick a clear winner, one must look at each service and judge what fits best for specific situations. Amalgam fillings may be tougher and cheaper, but their hardy composition doesn’t allow them to placed at every forms of damage. On the other hand, composite resin fillings are defintely versatile but they fall short on durability and longevity.
So, when you pit composite vs. amalgam fillings, a clear winner can only picked when the situation calls for it.
The takeaway from this article is that every service, regardless if they have the same function, have their own purpose to fill out. The pros and cons only help to characterize both the services. It does not mean to demerit or do a disservice to any of them. Keep this in mind if you’re trying to compare two services that practically do the same thing.
Of course, to find the clear winner between the two, it’s always best to consult your dentist about it. Seeing how both services have different functions that fill different situations, only your dentist can tell you whether or not which service is needed. Always remember this the next time a certain service or procedure has you puzzled.