Tooth fillings

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  • Tooth fillings
  • Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    'amalgam' – what you get on the nhs if it's not visible when you smile.

    you can get them drilled out and replaced with white ones (privately) but that's it.

    Terry Pratchett blames amalgam for his condition 🙁

    woodsman
    Member

    Any dentist's replying, sorry for the slight hijack, but I have a cracked tooth, what's the prognosis? ta

    Ofroading – does the new filling look metalic, or is the 'white' just more grey?

    Gargle with bleach, they'll be reet.

    iDave
    Member

    my dentist told me that having them drilled out and replaced with white was more likely to release mercury into you body. I have a mouthful after too many sports drinks in the 90's – glucose polymers being a shortcut to decay.

    Offroading
    Member

    Yeah it's on the NHS all just happened they told me it needed doing so of i trot to the next room for them etc. There are right at the back so not too bad i guess.

    woodsman
    Member

    They will last a bloody lot longer than the 'white' one's you had, on the plus side.

    when I asked my dentist about this, he said they haven't found anything better than amalgam yet. He told me that resin based fillings tend to shrink slightly, causing a gap into which saliva and bugs can get, whereas amalgam stays put. Amalgam contains mercury which is toxic, but I've just read that the amount involved is about 1/6th of normal mercury ingested.

    Offroading
    Member

    There more of a milky grey. Looking at images on google they are no where near as bad as the examples shown, no metalic finish at all.

    meeeee
    Member

    i'd have amalg fillings on back teeth instead of composites (white ones) and i'm a dentist 🙂 (and so would nearly all the dentists i know!)

    woodsman
    Member

    Good advice meeeee, I've got some composite fillings that have crumbled on my back teeth, which need relacing, my dentist doesn't like my preference that amalgum lasts longer.

    What's your advice on a cracked tooth, it's already filled, and now has a crack from the wall to gum?

    meeeee
    Member

    hairline crack?

    usually this

    Depends really how deep the crack is, might just need the crack filling, or could need all the old filling replaced, or if its really bad a crown. Hard to say without seeing it, but normally we just try the simplest option first (remove / fill the cracked area) then try more invasive / complicated things if that doesnt work.

    I'd get it checked out as they can leak and you can end up getting a lot of decay starting sometimes.

    Send it to me in the post and i'll have it back for you by the weekend 🙂

    woodsman
    Member

    I could do better than that myself – http://www.peterflynnclassiccars.com 😉

    It is hairline, and a tooth with an old amalgum filling. Hurts when I eat bread even! have a check up in a week Thurs.

    Offroading
    Member

    Morning,

    Just wondering if anyone here has more experience of tooth fillings than i.

    I had mine done when i was a kid and have just this morning had two replaced due to decay.

    The origanal ones were white – the new ones are a sort of grey which im not too chuffed about…

    Will they go white etc ? I have another appointment next week so do they do something else or im i lumped with them now ?

    I believe you can still get white resin fillings on NHS (used to be the case long ago).

    I wouldn't risk any amalgam if I was you. It's classified as hazardous waste when they remove it from cadavers. Do really want to suck on that for ..50 years?

    dooosuk
    Member

    You can still get white fillings on the NHS…you just have to ask for them and they cost more (well the one I had 5 weeks ago did).

    Had a white one fitted, smashed it to bits within a fortnight, dentist said they are softer than the grey stuff, so put amalgam in without problem since.

    Offroading
    Member

    doosuk how much was it ?

    The white ones i had lasted 14 years which i was OK with.

    coffeeking
    Member

    I've had nothing but trouble with fillings. And I hate the black ones.

    I spoke at length to a senior consultant dentist in a teaching hospital, he said the white ones are technically a better filling if done correctly and should out-last the amalgam ones, but people rarely do them properly. Metal ones expand and contract more than white ones and tend to cause further damage to the tooth and rely solely on topology (shape) to hold themselves in, whereas the whites bond to your tooth and should form a full seal.

    I dont know who to believe, but I've got a £360 dent waiting to happen to my wallet that I keep putting off but I'm terrified it's going to get worse while I make the choice. last thing I want is a mouthful of metal but I dont want a badly done super-expensive white filling either.

    dooosuk
    Member

    If I remember correctly I paid £80 for the filling and a clean. Although a colleague at work only reportedly paid £50 odd for hers.

    You have to ask before treatment. I'd just been numbed up when I asked. I then had to go downstairs to pay the difference before my dentist would actually put the white one in.

    meeeee
    Member

    coffeeking –

    technically a better filling if done correctly and should out-last the amalgam ones, but people rarely do them properly. Metal ones expand and contract more than white ones and tend to cause further damage to the tooth and rely solely on topology (shape) to hold themselves in, whereas the whites bond to your tooth and should form a full seal.

    well yes he's right upto a point, the metal ones can *sometimes* cause fractures. (although cause is maybe the wrong word, its more to do with the thickness of the remainig tooth and biting forces rather than expansion / contraction of the metal) However they can be bonded in ( a relatively recent method of doing them) which relies less on the shape of the cavity (and therefore means less weakening of the remaining tooth). As to weather white ones are stronger thats still a well argued point. They still dont have the abrasion resistance or compressive strength of amalgam.

    Composite flgs are also very technique sensitive – need to keep perfectly dry while placing them, and have to be cured or set (thats what the blue light does) properley otherwise they are very weak and will not bond properley.

    At the end of the day its personal choice but 'in general' large white ones WILL have a shorter life than an amalg (theres a few exceptions to this) and thats why i'd have amalgam unless it was a tiny white filling, and the majority of dental colleagues i know (hospital and general practice based) would also agree.

    coffeeking
    Member

    Cheers meeeeee, good to have that explained by someone who's not being paid by me! I might have the upper molars done in amalgam and the cracked lower and small mid-lower replaced in white. I do have the jaw of Mr Coulthard and a bite to match, which may explain why my white filled molars seem to have lasted about 4 years. Can you explain what I need to ask for regarding the bonded amalgam ones (without sounding like I'm a know-it-all internet self-dentist), or is that "standard" procedure now?

    meeeee
    Member

    bonded amalgs are basically 'glued in' ie you pack the amalgam onto a very thin layer of self setting bond (adhesive). To be honest its a technique that is more useful / essential on very large fillings as it reduces the need for pins or extra grooves cut into the tooth for mechanical retention of the filling (pins and groves can weaken the tooth and pins will casue stresses in the tooth structure).

    So if its a small filling no real need to bond them in, but if you ask your dentist i'm sure he'll be able to sort it out for you if necessary. Although there are some dentists who charge extra for this! Not me as i'm nice and it only takes an extra minute or so to do 🙂

    Theres also other alternatives to large white flgs you might not be aware of – porcelain or coposite inlays. These are stronger and are made in the lab with better materials, but cost quite a bit more depending on quality (eg the CNC milled or cast ceramics like Lava or Empress)

    Hard to give you the best advice on here really as it all depends on the size and position in of the fillings, but PM me if you want more info. Although i'm out riding tonight so might be late by the time i reply!

    Offroading
    Member

    Just to drag this back up, slightly different question…

    I had my checkup last week then the fillings done yesterday… I have a follow up appointment next week. There has been no mention of charges can i be safe in thinking this is all under the NHS ?

    meeeee
    Member

    should have got an estimate NHS or private, if you didnt ring them up and ask how much will cost. If its NHS should be £45.60 for the fillings, if its private its oooh look out the window, see the cars in the car park, think of shiny new bike bits the dentist needs to buy and make up a figure haha

    Offroading
    Member

    £45 per filling or for both !? I had x-rays done at the same time.

    Im a little suprised because my brother was done at the same time as myself, he was x-ray'd and wasn't charged and wasn't asked to go back etc.

    dooosuk
    Member

    All this info is available on the nhs website, but I think it's something like £15.60 for a checkup, then add on £30 if you require fillings (to make the £45.60 meeeee mentioned). If you require any more fillings/treatment within 4 weeks or something you don't pay again.

    http://www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/AboutNHSservices/Pages/DentistsFAQs.aspx#q07

    meeeee
    Member

    if its NHS its 45.60 for all fillings. Which is a pain for me sometimes as i have loads of people at the moment needing 5-6 hours worth of treatment… all for 45.60 + the 15 quid the nhs give me to top it up! Swings and roundabouts though as some people only need 20 mins work and pay the same.

    Thats the big complaint with the new system… regular attenders with good teeth needing maybe 1 filling pay the same as the 'duh whats a toothbrush' brigade!

    doosuk is right as well, if you need further fillings within 2 months eg if another one breaks then its free provided its all in the same treatment band. And all NHS fillings are guruanteed for 12 months.

    Offroading
    Member

    So whats the deal with paying then ? I've had the fillings i could "technically" not go back – surely if i had to pay they would have told me about this ?? If someone owe'd me £45 for some work i wouldn't let them out the building.

    My brother had a checkup and X-rays then left without being asked to pay etc – he was told he didn't need to go back etc so again would they not have asked him to pay or something ?

    dooosuk
    Member

    Are you students and exempt from nhs charges?

    Padowan
    Member

    I went to the dentist a couple of weeks ago after an absence of about 15 years (yes years!) I managed to find a fee-paying NHS dentist meaning that one on their books your appointments/checkups/work fall into one of the 3 bands (£15.60, £45.60, £more)

    I needed 2 fillings, which thy did there and then within the 15 mins of my appointment. Both fillings in the back, both amalgum – total cost for me: £45.60. I was really impressed with the efficiency of the service, and rather surprised that they did them both without anaesthetic as they weren't that deep – I still reckon that that was a cost-saving method due to me being a "fixed-budget" NHS customer!

    The Wife also needed a single filling on the back of a front tooth – this one was done as a composite, white one due to the fact that it would have been visible from the front if it had been amalgum. Again, total cost £45.60.

    Offroading
    Member

    SO you paid when you had the filling done ? Where you told you had to pay?

    Padowan
    Member

    I knew that I had to pay, so I hung around at the reception desk until they told me what to pay. I guess I could have just walked out at that point!

    I'm sure that if you'd walked off without paying they'd be sending you an invoice. I certainly don't know of any totally free dentistry, except perhaps if you're a child or pregnant!?

    meeeee
    Member

    i'd just give them a call, you *should* have been given an estimate, and we take payment before the flgs are done, but sometimes when its busy reception can let the odd estimate and charge slip through. Best thing is give them a call, they'll tell you what the charge will be and you wont get any nasty shocks when you go back. But should just be 45.60 unless you are on any benefits.

    Offroading
    Member

    Just to update….

    Went in today for what i thought was just a checkup on the fillings. Ended up getting a 3rd filling and a scale and polish. Total charge was £35 for some reason. Not that i complained of course.

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