Advantages of posterior composite resin fillings over silver fillings: Amalgam (silver) remains an acceptable restorative material. However, composite resin fillings offer two main advantages: 1. They are bonded to the components of the tooth which may add additional strength to the tooth structure; 2. They are tooth colored and thus allow for a more aesthetic restoration.
Disadvantages of posterior composite resin fillings: 1. Posterior composite resin fillings take more time, skill, and effort to complete than amalgam (silver) restorations. Therefore, it may be neccessary for the dentist to charge a higher fee for placeing them. 2. Often after placement of composite fillings, the involved teeth may exhibit sensitivity. The sensitivity may be mild to severe. The sensitivty may last only for a short period of time or much longer. If such sensitivity is persistent or lasts for much extended periods of time, this may be a sign of a more serious problem. Composite fillings have potential for bond failure or fracture which may result in leakage and potential for rapid development of decay. At times, this may lead to exposure or trauma to underlying pulp tissue. Should the pulp not heal, which oftentimes is exhibited by extreme sensitivity or possible abcess, root canal treatment or extraction may be required.
Dr. James L. Johnson