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Bernard Rust, DDS, MAGD
Changing lives one smile at a time!
Call: (210) 499-4746

The Problem with Amalgams

Dr. Rust does not place amalgam (silver) restorations and hasn't in over 20 years.  Amalgam restorations contain mercury which expands and contracts with temperature changes, similar to the mercury in a thermometer.  Teeth do not expand or contract.  Amalgam is a very strong material, so usually it is not the amalgam that fails or breaks, it is the tooth. Generally, after 8 years, almost all silver fillings have decay underneath them.  Amalgam also leaks from the day it is put in to the tooth.  This gives way to bacteria getting in between the tooth and the amalgam.  Because the filling is metal, it also masks decay on x-ray. 

Dr. Rust replaces amalgam, in most cases, with a composite (tooth colored) restoration.  These restorations not only look better, but are better for your tooth.  Composite fillings are bonded to the tooth so that no bacteria gets between the tooth and the filling.  If the decay under the amalgam is too extensive, or the patient is having pain while chewing, the tooth may require a crown to restore it properly.  If the patient has symptoms of pain with hot or cold that lingers, this usually means that the decay has reached the pulp of the tooth, requiring a root canal and crown.  Unfortunately we have also seen cases where the tooth breaks down in to the root of the tooth.  In this instance the only option is removal of the tooth.   

 These are some pictures of silver fillings that Dr. Rust has removed on some of our patients.  They clearly show what can be lurking under an amalgam. 


 Amalgam Restoration                Underlying Decay After Amalgam Removal


 Amalgam Restoration        Underlying Decay After Amalgam Removal



Amalgam Restoration          Underlying Decay After Amalgam Removal


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