Child getting a dental checkup in the West Valley and Salt Lake City area

White Filling vs Silver Filling? Which is best for your child’s smile?

We know the amount of stress parents face when it comes to helping children understand how to care for their oral health. If you have a child with a cavity, a decision you need to make relates to the color and material of the filling. Fortunately, Redwood Family Dentistry can help you in making the best decision for your child. Here are some things you need to know about dental fillings, and how to select the right one for your child.

White Fillings (Composite)

White fillings are called “composite” fillings and come in a white coloring to closely match the natural color of the tooth. For children with decay on the surface area that is visible when they smile or talk, we recommend using composite fillings. We work hard to closely match the filling material to the color of the tooth so the filling will not look unnatural.

Our pediatric dentists recommend using composite fillings because they look more natural and are healthier for the tooth. Composite material is a mixture of acrylic resin, glass, and plastics. The composite fillings are strong and do not corrode over the years. These fillings also do not contain mercury like silver (amalgam) fillings do.

We have a large selection of composite materials, making it easier for us to closely match the filling material to the tooth. If your child needs fillings near their front teeth, we always use composite material to closely match their teeth. Fillings in permanent teeth benefit from the use of composite material as it is a long-term solution to continue keeping your child’s smile looking white and perfect.

Composite material does not require a large section of the tooth to be removed for the material to be placed inside. Patients hoping to limit the amount of healthy tooth being removed will find composite fillings to be a great solution.

Silver Fillings (Amalgam)

Amalgam fillings are made with silver, elemental mercury, copper and tin and are the most common and often the cheapest fillings available. They only take one visit to place and are the easiest to apply since dental amalgam can be placed reliably even when moisture is present. They are also self-sealing and resistant to leaking.

One of the downsides to dental amalgam is that placing the amalgam filling requires some parts of the healthy tooth to be removed. The dental amalgam can also darken due to corrosion after time which doesn’t affect the function but doesn’t look as good. This is why most fillings containing amalgam are usually placed in the back of the mouth.

Another concern that people have with amalgam fillings is that they contain around 50% mercury. While the amount of mercury released into your child’s body from amalgam fillings is relatively small, it still can be a cause for concern.

Our goal at Redwood Pediatric Dentistry is to help your child learn correct oral health habits to prevent cavities. Contact our Taylorsville dental office to schedule an examination and cleaning for your child today 801.281.8881. We look forward to meeting you and your child and helping them be on their way to a healthier smile!

Schedule an appointment at our Salt Lake City Pediatric Dental Office today!