Still today, amalgam is still considered as a solution to repair a tooth damaged by decay or trauma and restore its chewing and aesthetic function.
Amalgam is a mixture of fine silver, tin and copper powder that sometimes has zinc with mercury as added materials.
It has been a successful product, due to its resistance to chewing forces, but it has several drawbacks, such as the risk that mercury can cause to health, which is a thermal and electrical conductor and, above all, its poor contribution to aesthetics .
Due to these disadvantages, the exchange of amalgams for resins has been gaining ground, in Costa Rica, compared to resins or white shims that, in addition to being aesthetic, have various favorable functional properties.
Resins are an increasingly accepted resource, both for tooth repairs and to replace amalgams. Let’s look at some of the reasons:
- Because it is a metallic compound, the amalgam does not adhere to the tooth (it is packed by mechanical action) so, over time, it admits leaks of bacteria that can cause cavities and tooth sensitivity.
- The metals in the amalgam cause stains that are very difficult to remove, as they enter the tiny tubules of the tooth. It is difficult to restore the tooth, even if the amalgam is removed.
- The amalgam is harder than the tooth itself, a misleading circumstance because excessive chewing force can bind the tooth, since it is a wedge. Instead, the resin has a tooth-like hardness that helps dissipate forces.
- For an amalgam to fit properly, an additional cavity must be made after removing a cavity. In addition, there is a risk that the amalgam may be larger than necessary, which is counterproductive against the principles of conservative dentistry.
- The metals that make up the amalgam produce sensitivity, due to a phenomenon known as “galvanic current”, something similar to small electrical discharges. It can only be calmed by removing the amalgams.
- Secondary decay is not distinguishable on radiographs, due to which the bacteria that produce it advance, without being perceived through a timely diagnosis.
- Resin restorations give the tooth a clean and natural appearance, fit perfectly in the dental cavity, adhere to the tooth tissue and provide a pleasant aesthetic presence.
The exchange of amalgams for resins is, in principle, a good decision, but it must be supported by radiographs or other complementary examinations, to obtain a broad overview of the dimensions of the prosthesis and the changes that may result from the procedure.
At Cero Caries Costa Rica we give you the opportunity to have unlimited resins, so that you can enjoy a cosmetic and pleasant restoration for a period of 10 years, by acquiring a one-time payment membership.