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    Thread: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

    1. #1
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      Default Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      I've been worrying about having two teeth out but I thought i could be ok getting a filling in one.. this led me to looking into fillings and learning about amalgam and being a little concerned because I have three already.

      I have an appointment on Monday with a new dentist to access my two teeth I was told I need out, but I also have a tooth with an amalgam filling that hurts.. but I'm not sure if its pain spreading from my troubled tooth making it hurt or if there is actually a problem with it.

      If there does happen to be a problem with it and they have to work on it now I'm scared of them drilling it to fix it..

      But, I'm sure repairing alagaram fillings must be a fairly common thing and personally I've never known anyone says its made them ill? I've read some scary articles online though.

      Hopefully the pain is just spreading from my problem tooth and its all ok and I'm worrying to much, I only got the filling two years ago.

    2. #2
      Jaylah Guest

      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Hi Darren,

      A couple of weeks ago, I went and had a tooth repaired. It had had an amalgam filling in it for decades and, a couple of months ago, a piece of the tooth broke off. I wasn't sure if it could be fixed with a new filling or if the dentist would have to grind it down and put a crown over it.

      So I was thrilled to death when he said it could be fixed with a new filling. (That's like 1/10th the cost of a crown!)

      He drilled out the old filling, drilled around a bit more to make a clean surface for the new filling, and then put in a larger filling. I never got sick or anything.

    3. #3
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Darren
      It is perfectly safe. Please don't worry. Concentrate on getting appropriate care to save your teeth if possible. Amalgam, composite, gold alloy they are all fine to use. The fact that you have had amalgam fillings for years and come to no harm should be reassurance enough? It is for me.
      It's the 21st Century.......dentistry can and should be painless but we patients come unstuck because all dentists are not created equal

    4. #4
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Quote Originally Posted by brit View Post
      Darren
      It is perfectly safe. Please don't worry. Concentrate on getting appropriate care to save your teeth if possible. Amalgam, composite, gold alloy they are all fine to use. The fact that you have had amalgam fillings for years and come to no harm should be reassurance enough? It is for me.
      Brit I am naturally a worrier (I hide it well I know lol) reading everything I have online last few days doesn't help..

      It's odd how it goes from the mild guidance of "you can have your filling drilled along with water and suction and everything will be fine"

      To the extreme of "you will need to have a plastic guard around the tooth, an alternate air supply for your nose, specially made extra strong suction equipment, special vitamins and minerals for your body to recover etc etc.

      But logically the only thing that makes me feel better about it is I know that people must get it done all the time and I've never heard of anyone dropping down dead or getting seriously ill from having a filling replaced.

    5. #5
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Hey DarrenH

      Let me start bij saying that amalgam fillings suffer from bad public relationship, and people don't like the idea of amalgam. As a dentist and someone that read a bit about the materilas, I would prefer to have an amalgam filling than a composite (unless it is a front tooth and than the amalgam is not esthetic).
      Amalgam is safer to the body than composite, and amalgam fillings last longer than any other filling materila. But again, the amalgam suffers from bad PR: it is silver/black, it has been used 100 years ago, it has Mercury in it.
      I work in Holland, where amalgam is hardly used anymore. The reason for it is purely political and is not evidenced based.

      For a healthy and safe removle ofr an amlagam filling you need a good suction. If the dentist uses a rubber dam it is even better. Let me even go further and tell you that if you by acciedent swallow a bit of amalgam, nothing will happen to you. Amalgam has been used for years not only as a filling material for teeth but also as filling material in internal places in the body. Furtheremore, swallowing something does not mean that it enters the body. A substance needs to be absorbed along the digestion track, and this does not happen with a amalgam.

      In short: it is perfectly safe.
      Dr. Daniel Finkelman
      DMD (2005); BSc Psychology (2007)
      www.TheHagueDentalCare.nl

    6. #6
      Jaylah Guest

      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Quote Originally Posted by DarrenH View Post
      ..."you will need to have a plastic guard around the tooth, an alternate air supply for your nose, specially made extra strong suction equipment, special vitamins and minerals for your body to recover etc etc....
      Good heavens, I had none of that. My dentist just removed the old filling, drilled the tooth a bit to prepare it for the new filling, and then put in the new one. No dental dam, no "alternate air supply", no different suction device, no vitamins or minerals.

      He also did not call in a witch doctor to drive away evil spirits while he worked.

      I'm still quite alive and kickin', and have shown no signs of even the slightest illness.

    7. #7
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Good heavens, I had none of that.
      No me neither and I had two amalgam fillings replaced with composite around 5 years ago.

      I am now interested in Dr.Daniel's comment -

      Amalgam is safer to the body than composite
      Why is this ?

    8. #8
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Quote Originally Posted by Carys View Post
      No me neither and I had two amalgam fillings replaced with composite around 5 years ago.

      I am now interested in Dr.Daniel's comment -



      Why is this ?

      Oh god don't ask him that, I have 4 composite fillings lol I have worried enough.

    9. #9
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Well, I currently have two composite fillings and one front temporary composite crown and temporary composite overlay. So, there is major composite, fillings aside, in the fact that nearly two whole teeth are made of it. If it causes boils on the bum, I NEED to know ! LOL

    10. #10
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      Default Re: Safe To Drill Amalgam Fillings?

      Quote Originally Posted by DarrenH View Post
      Oh god don't ask him that, I have 4 composite fillings lol I have worried enough.
      Safe to say it is one of those debatable areas in dentistry.
      From my lay-person's perspective, I can tell you that there is a whole scam industry in dentistry devoted to unnecessary amalgam removal for high fees justified by 'alternative air supply, etc etc '

      Amalgam fillings done well definitely last for decades. Composites not so much, not been around long enough may be, much more technique-sensitive.
      I have both types in my mouth and am happy to have both. One of my kids has a single filling - it is composite. It will be interesting to see how this fares compared to my decades-old amalgams.
      It's the 21st Century.......dentistry can and should be painless but we patients come unstuck because all dentists are not created equal

    11. The Following User Says Thank You to brit For This Useful Post:

      Carys (16th March 2012)

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