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Do Dental Fillings Need To Be Replaced?

“Do dental fillings need to be replaced?” It is a common question. But it is also one of the most difficult issues to answer yes or no.

It is important to note that there is no conclusive research or study showing that silver mercury can be harmful to your overall health when it comes to mercury leeching. However, problems do occur under old fillings. Unfortunately, these problems are easy to miss from the surface. Even with the use of x-rays, these problems might not be easy to observe. In most situations, the problems could cause decay getting under the fillings.

Hiding Decay

Old dental fillings can hide decay. It is particularly the case with silver fillings. Because they are opaque to x-rays, it can be difficult for the dentist to see a cavity under it until the problem becomes severe. Studies showed that x-rays would only help dentists in seeing 50 percent of what is going on under the old dental fillings. Even with a full set of x-rays, your dentists can only see up to 85 percent of what is going on inside the fillings. That is there is still 20 percent that dentists could not see because the problem has been blocked out.

In some cases, it can mean a difference between having another dental filling or undergoing a root canal treatment.


Cracks in your teeth may not show on x-rays. They are common in people who are in their 40s or 50s. For example, if you have cracks coming off your teeth and you notice some sensitivity, it could mean that the cracks are getting deeper. It could also mean that they are closer to the nerve. The only way to resolve it is for those affected teeth to be crowned.

Can Colored Fillings Prevent Teeth Cracking?

Silver fillings do not strengthen your teeth. In other words, those fillings will just act like a wedge. So, when you bite down on them, the forces will be transmitted to your tooth’s remaining structure. Now, if the filling is more than half of your tooth’s width, then it is likely that your tooth is going to crack or chip.

Replacing Dental Fillings Will Depend On Your Condition

Dental fillings do need to be replaced sooner or later. But replacing them will depend on how proactive you can be. Signs that you may need to replace old fillings would include the following:

•    Soreness

•    Signs of decay beneath or surrounding the tooth

•    Cracks to the tooth’s body preventing the filing from supporting the tooth properly

Replacing old fillings can be a cost-effective solution in the long run. You may have to pay more upfront. However, fixing the problems when they are still small is more cost effective than fixing them when they become significant. You need to do it sooner rather than later and waiting for a time when you already feel pain.

The bottom line is that replacing dental fillings may not be necessary. However, you can always want it to be done.