Think about the last time that you saw someone (that wasn’t a rapper or a pirate) who had gold teeth. I bet it has not been within the past ten or twenty years. In the past, gold was commonly used by dentists in fillings and dental crowns, but this precious metal has since fallen by the wayside in favor of less garish materials. What exactly is the reason for its downfall, and is gold likely to come back?
More Than Jewelry
Gold is one of the oldest dental materials, and until the past few decades was still in regular use for fillings and crowns, largely due to its incredible durability. This precious metal has fallen out of favor for a couple of reasons. Modern aesthetics have been leaning towards nearly unnaturally white smiles. While gold may look fantastic on a ring or as a necklace, it tends to clash with pearly white teeth. Additionally, most patients do not necessarily want to advertise the fact that they have had tooth decay that required fillings or crowns. Gold dental materials, especially at the front of the teeth tend to draw attention, and not in the best way.
Current Popular Alternatives
For those who wish for their gold to stay out of there mouths, there are alternatives out there. The most popular, and the kind that Dr. Matthews currently offers, are “white fillings” or fillings that are made out of a composite resin as opposed to gold or some other metal amalgam. Composite resin fillings are great because they have about the same lifetime as metal amalgam fillings, but they blend into your teeth to help keep your smile looking natural. Metal amalgams have also fallen under some scrutiny due to the presence of toxic metals, such as mercury, but the same cannot be said of composite resin fillings.
Prevention is Always Preferable
Composite resin may have overtaken gold as the preferred type of filling in the age of ultra white teeth, but keeping your teeth healthy in the first place is always the best course of action. You should be brushing your teeth twice daily with fluoridated toothpaste as well as flossing at least once per day followed by a mouthwash rinse. Scheduling regular visits with your dentist is also key as a good dentist will not only keep your teeth clean and give you tips for practicing good dental hygiene, but can also identify any potential issues with your teeth and gums before they become serious. If you live in the Austin area and are looking for a fantastic dentist, give our dedicated team at Dan Matthews, DDS a call at (512) 520-0606 to schedule an appointment today.