For generations, dentists have used silver (amalgam) fillings to repair decayed teeth and restore smiles. While this method has been proven to be both safe and affordable many people are now opting for tooth-colored (white composite) fillings to restore their smiles. Before deciding which filling method is best for restoring your smile, you should do a bit of research and consult your local Upper Darby dentist.


Amalgam Fillings

Amalgam fillings, which are commonly referred to as silver fillings, are actually composed of a mix of metals that include silver, tin, mercury, copper, and zinc. Millions of Americans choose this filling option because it is known for being both durable and affordable.



  • One of the biggest appeals of silver fillings is their price and the fact that they are more affordable than white fillings.
  • Silver fillings are extremely strong and can withstand the daily wear and tear associated with chewing.
  • They can last anywhere between 10-15 years.



  • Silver fillings are not aesthetically pleasing as they do not match the color of natural teeth which means they are not suited for use in front teeth.
  • One major drawback of a silver filling is the potential health risk associated with the mercury present in silver fillings.


White Composite Fillings

White composite or tooth-colored fillings are composed of a blend of plastics and small glass particles and have a number of uses. Unlike silver fillings, these fillings can be used to only repair cavities but also can be used to change the color or shape of a tooth.



  • There are no health risks associated with white fillings as they do not contain mercury.
  • White fillings can be closely matched to a person’s natural tooth color and can be used on front teeth.



  • Since the procedure for installing white fillings requires more advanced dental technology and materials, placing white fillings requires more time in the chair than placing silver fillings.
  • White fillings are less durable than silver fillings and usually only last for up to five years.


If you’re filling falls out regardless of it is a silver or white filling you should seek the help of a 24 hr dentist in Upper Darby to repair your filling before bacteria gets into the tooth structure. You can request emergency dental care at AmeriDENTAL Group in Upper Darby by calling 484-971-6351.