April 23, 2019
For many decades, metal restorations were a staple in dentistry. Gold, silver, and even mercury all played a role in filling cavities, protecting damaged teeth, and replacing lost teeth. However, modern dentistry offers safer, more attractive, biocompatible alternatives to such materials. Your holistic dentist in Sunnyvale is here to talk more about these health-friendly restorative options.
Biocompatible: The Best Standard of Care
The word “biocompatible” describes materials that work well within the human body and that are not prone to cause allergic reactions. For example, our office uses composite resin to fill in cavities rather than amalgam. The mercury in amalgam fillings is a toxic substance that can lead to headaches and other health problems. Metal fillings also expand and contract with temperature changes, which can damage the tooth around them. Resin fillings do not come with such problems. Placing a resin filling also requires that your dentist removes less of the tooth structure than is necessary with metal fillings.
Another biocompatible material that we use to restore teeth is porcelain, or dental ceramic. Whereas metal crowns and bridges can increase tooth sensitivity, porcelain crowns and bridges have a lower risk of sensitivity. Unlike metal, porcelain crowns will also never interfere with MRIs and will not cause any allergic reactions.
Aesthetics are another reason why many patients prefer biocompatible restorations. Metal crowns, fillings, and bridges look nothing like natural teeth. Therefore, they can significantly mar the way your smile looks. Porcelain and composite resin are almost indistinguishable from natural tooth enamel, so they can blend in seamlessly with the teeth around them.
Are Biocompatible Materials Less Durable?
Their impressive longevity, combined with their other notable advantages, make them far superior to metal. But how can you make your biocompatible restorations stand the test of time? Be sure you:
- Maintain an excellent oral hygiene routine.
- Don’t eat a lot of sticky or hard foods.
- Wear a mouthguard when you play sports.
- Do not grind or clench your teeth.
- Visit your dentist for routine checkups so they can see how your restorations are faring and recommend replacement at the appropriate time.
Metal-free restorations are the holistic, health-friendly way to repair damaged or decayed teeth. The next time you need to have a bit of dental work done, be sure that your dentist is only using materials that will work well with your body.
About the Author
Dr. William Langston is a Texas native who has been practicing dentistry for over 40 years, and he has dedicated much of that time to refining his skills in holistic care. If you would like to learn more about how he can care for your smile in a way that takes your whole-body wellness into account, contact our office at 972-270-6533.
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