Mercury Free Dentistry in Kirkland, WA

Cavities used to be filled with gold. This method was viable, but the demand for more affordable products drove researchers to develop amalgam. Since the early 1800s, “silver fillings” have been the norm. That is a long time for a product to be used without some sort of improvement.

The issue with amalgam

It has been discovered that modern dental materials, and even gold, offer more advantages than can be found with amalgam.

Aside from the concentration of mercury in amalgam fillings, which is a concern to many patients today, there are disadvantages to this material that we find significant. Amalgam contains several metals. Metal restorations cannot be seen through dental X-rays. This means that a problem may be hidden from view. Because the margins, or borders, of amalgam fillings, weaken over time as a result of expansion and contraction, the development of decay beneath the filling is a very real possibility. Also, this expansion and contraction eventually cause tiny fractures in the natural tooth structure, making it vulnerable to further damage. On a cosmetic level, teeth with old amalgam fillings can become darkened as the material is absorbed into the enamel.

The mercury-free alternative

At Kingsgate Dental Clinic, fillings are done with tooth-colored composite material. This method has achieved beautiful results and also longer-lasting results. Composite fillings are conservative because they are bonded to the tooth. This means that a minimal reduction of tooth structure is necessary. Once the material has hardened into place, its margins remain tight because composite does not expand and contract as aggressively as metal. In fact, it is very similar to enamel in its response to hot and cold temperatures. Composite fillings can support healthy teeth for many years.

Amalgam removal

Because amalgam fillings contain mercury, the removal of existing fillings should be handled with care. Dr. Kelley performs amalgam removal after placing a rubber dam around the tooth to isolate it from the rest of the mouth. The tiny particles of mercury that come away from the filling as it is drilled down are caught by the rubber sheeting rather than absorbed into the skin in the mouth or on the face. As the procedure is performed, high-volume suction is also kept near the mouth to immediately extract particles from the area.

Mercury Free Dentistry in Kirkland, WA
Dr. Ann Kelley Best dentist near me

Ann Kelley, DDS

Dr. Ann Kelley is a graduate of the Creighton University School of Dentistry in Omaha, Nebraska. She highly values the comfort of her patients, and places the needs of the patient above her convenience. Her dental clinic is built to bring the best and most comfortable dental experience to all her patients. She builds relationships with her patients based on trust and always acts to safeguard this trust.

Do your fillings need to go?

Call Kingsgate Dental Clinic today.