While most dentists focus their attention solely on their patient's oral health, holistic dentists take a different approach. They consider all aspects of a patient's health, which can lead them to make recommendations that differ from those of other dentists. For example, holistic dentistry clinics typically offer only white fillings, even for molars, where other dentists might use an amalgam filling. Here are some reasons why holistic dentists prefer white fillings.
1. White Fillings Have Lower Toxicity
Many holistic dentists have concerns about the mercury content of amalgam fillings. Mercury is toxic to the human body, but many dentists use it anyway because they think the small quantity poses no significant threat and amalgam is an affordable material to use to fill cavities.
Studies have investigated the potential negative effects of amalgam fillings on overall health. They found that these fillings gradually release mercury into the body. Although there is no clear evidence that this causes adverse health effects in most people, some people have experienced hypersensitivity to amalgam fillings. Holistic dentists believe that it is best to keep this toxic substance out of the body by working solely with white fillings, which are made from a non-toxic composite material.
2. White Fillings Provide Better Tooth Integration
Although amalgam fillings are very effective at filling holes in the teeth caused by decay, they do not form any bond with the natural tooth. This lack of bonding leads to small movements between the filling and the tooth, which can eventually cause the tooth to crack. The tiny gap around the filling also provides a space in which bacteria can grow, leading to further decay.
White fillings, on the other hand, do bond with natural teeth. As a result, they may be more effective at protecting the damaged tooth over the long term. The only downside is that white fillings can wear down when they are used in molars, but dentists can easily add more material when this occurs without needing to drill the tooth or do any further damage to natural structures.
3. White Fillings Require Less Drilling
Before placing a metal filling, a dentist must drill a large enough space in the tooth to allow the filling to fit. White fillings can fill much smaller cavities. Therefore, there is no need to drill away any healthy tooth to create space for them. Holistic dentists believe it is always better to protect healthy tooth structure as much as possible, which is why they offer only white fillings.