3d render of teeth with inlay, onlay and crown filling over white background

Tooth preservation

Amalgam alternative

tooth-whitening (1)

Restorative dentistry and
Replacement of amalgam fillings

Practice times

Monday - Thursday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Telephone consultation

Monday - Thursday 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Fri 08 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Restorative dentistry and replacement of amalgam fillings

High-quality dental fillings with sustainable materials

Are you looking for a competent dentist for restorative dentistry and the replacement of amalgam fillings? Then smilin" is the right place for you. The treatment of decayed teeth with a dental filling is one of our main tasks. After a successful appointment, the filling or inlay will protect and stabilize your tooth in the long term. In addition to the classic amalgam filling, we also have safe and sustainable materials for high-quality dental fillings. Find out about the best amalgam alternatives here.

Everything at a glance

Table of contents

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    What is amalgam and why is it used in dentistry?

    Amalgam has been used as a seal for well over 100 years and is an alloy consisting of around 50% pure, encapsulated mercury as well as silver, tin, copper and other metals. The amalgam paste is still malleable during the treatment and expands slightly afterwards. Curing is complete after about 24 hours. The following characteristics spoke in favor of amalgam as a permanent filling:

    • Long shelf life

    • reasonably priced

    • good moldability in soft condition

    • Teeth with treated caries can be effectively filled

    However, since the 1920s there has been an increasingly controversial debate about the use of amalgam, which is potentially harmful to health. As amalgam fillings contain mercury, they may not be used on children under the age of 15 in the EU according to the regulation. Use by pregnant women is also prohibited. From an aesthetic perspective, the grayish-dark shade also has a detrimental effect. Whether amalgam fillings also cause allergies and possibly other diseases is the subject of ongoing debate. The criticism outlined above has significantly accelerated the development of amalgam alternatives.

    Is amalgam harmful?

    Amalgam under discussion

    What alternatives are there to amalgam?


    • Ceramic fillings

    • Fillings made of plastic / composite filling

    • Gold fillings

    In order to select the best dental filling for our patients, it is important to know the specific advantages and disadvantages of each amalgam alternative. In addition, aspects such as the remaining tooth structure, position in the dentition and the patient's esthetic requirements must be taken into account. We present the possibilities to you.

    Our recommendation

    What is the best dental filling?


    Full denture/total denture

    Ceramic inlays are made individually for each patient's tooth. At smilin" we only use tried and tested ceramic materials. With the help of our state-of-the-art CEREC® process, we fabricate your ceramic inlay during the treatment session. With the amalgam alternative ceramic filling, there is therefore no waiting time, and there is no need for a temporary filling to bridge the gap. High-quality ceramic inlays have a very long durability and therefore play an important role in sustainable dentistry. In comparison, ceramic fillings clearly outlast plastic fillings.

    Ceramic inlays/ fillings

    - Permanently dimensionally stable
    - resists chewing pressure particularly well
    - Simple adaptation to the individual tooth shade
    - is structurally similar to natural tooth enamel
    - longest shelf life of all amalgam alternatives
    - Very well tolerated

    - more expensive than amalgam or plastic fillings
    - Not covered by health insurance


    Fillings made of plastic / composite filling

    The term composite describes composite materials made from plastic, glass and quartz. During dental treatment, liquid resin serves as a bonding agent for the tooth-colored composite filling. The filling is then cured professionally using polymerization lamps. The stability, resilience when chewing and longevity of resin fillings have been significantly improved in recent years thanks to new material mixtures, so that resin/composite is now a recognized standard as an alternative to amalgam.


    Gold fillings

    Gold can be used as a dental filling or inlay because the material can be processed to fit precisely. Gold has a comparatively soft consistency, making it both unbreakable and durable. This applies in particular to stressed chewing surfaces in the molar region. Another plus point is the high biocompatibility. Gold inlays, on the other hand, are less popular due to their striking coloration. The costs incurred, which are not covered by health insurance, must also be taken into account.


    Glass ionomer cement (GIZ)

    Glass ionomer cement is also used as a filling. GIZ fillings are mixtures consisting of carboxylic acids, inorganic fillers and water. This variant is mainly used when a temporary filling is required. GIZ thus serves as a temporary dental filling with good compatibility.

    Ceramic fillings in comparison

    Which is better - amalgam or ceramic?

    Due to their physical properties, ceramic fillings, which tend to be harder than amalgam or composite, are preferred if there is major damage to one or more teeth. A particularly positive feature of ceramic fillings is the precision fit of the material. Durability, resilience when chewing, matching the shade of the existing teeth and very good biological compatibility round off the properties of this high-quality amalgam alternative. It is often used to treat larger holes in the posterior teeth. However, ceramic is significantly more expensive to produce than amalgam or plastic.

    Amalgam is a comparatively strong and robust filling that is still used in some practices to fill molars. A composite filling is also long-lasting, but tends to be more suitable for small to medium-sized restorations of teeth that chew rather gently. However, constant progress in research and practice now also allows the use of composite in molars.

    Direct comparison

    Amalgam vs. composite

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    Don't leave your dental health to chance!

    Please feel free to come to our practice or give us a call!


    Questions on the topic

    The critical reception of the topic of amalgam in restorative dentistry is based on the fact that the alloy contains mercury, which is toxic in large quantities. However, to date there is no clear scientific evidence of an increased risk of cancer from intact amalgam fillings. To date, no direct connection between amalgam fillings and diseases, allergies or non-specific symptoms has been proven. However, there is an initial suspicion in this regard. The demand to establish amalgam alternatives is also based on the important argument of reducing the burden on the environment by reducing the use of the alloy.

    What our patients say about us

    Customer testimonials

    We advise you extensively

    Please contact us if you have any questions

    Toothache, visits to the dentist and the indicated methods of treatment are always a sensitive subject. We take your needs and your individual well-being very seriously. We are therefore happy to respond to our patients' questions and concerns. Please use the contact options listed for brief questions; we will be happy to clarify challenging issues together in a confidential patient consultation.

    We take care of your smile.

    Benefit from our additional services

    In addition to high-quality dentistry, we offer a comprehensive range of services on request to make your visit to us as pleasant as possible.

    • conversation

      SMS notifications

      for reminders about check-up and prophylaxis appointments

    • x-ray

      Digital dental impression

      for fast fabrication of precise dental prostheses in 2 hours.

    • observation

      Own laboratory on site

      for controlled quality and short processing times

    • opening-hours

      Long opening hours

      for more flexibility when booking appointments

    satisfied customers
    Years of medical experience
    more than
    Employee training in the year

    Book an appointment conveniently online

    Make an appointment online now!

    If you are interested in our dental health services, we will be happy to advise you: The smilin'' dental practice near Lörrach, Weil am Rhein and Basel awaits you. Please simply arrange your personal appointment by telephone or via our online appointment booking tool!

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