BPA & Mercury-Free Dental Fillings in San Francisco, CA

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Have a cavity? Dental filling is a trusted treatment used by dentists to eradicate tooth decay and seal the area, preventing further damage to the tooth structure.

A dental filling procedure is relatively easy and cost-effective, and when done by an experienced San Francisco dentist, can be a safe way to keep your teeth – and whole body – healthy.

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Does Dental Filling Material Matter?

Are you asking the question, “what are dental fillings made of?” Not all filling materials are created equal and it’s important to know what’s going in your mouth before you’re in the dentist’s chair.  

There are generally two options for cavities: mercury dental fillings and white dental filling material. Here’s what to know about both.

Mercury Dental Fillings

Mercury dental fillings, also known as amalgam, is the oldest type of dental filling material in use. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports amalgam is a mixture of different types of metals, including tin, silver, copper, and liquid mercury. Roughly half of the mixture is mercury by weight.

Although amalgam is strong and long-lasting, it has serious health risks according to the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. Some of these risks include allergies, Alzheimer’s, autoimmune disorders, chronic fatigue, hearing loss, kidney disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, and periodontal disease. Studies show that getting mercury dental fillings during pregnancy may lead to low birthweight, premature delivery, and neurodevelopmental delays.

Learn more about dental amalgam fillings by reading the articles below:

The Truth About Mercury Fillings (Podcast)

The Dangers of Mercury Fillings: Why You Don’t Want This in Your Mouth

White Dental Filling

A white dental filling, also called composite resin, is a non-toxic material that is used significantly more often than amalgam fillings. It is composed of a mixture of BPA-free hard plastics that are pliable when filling the tooth and are hardened via a UV light curing process.

The American Dental Association suggests that composite dental filling material is a good choice for patients who want a natural-looking filling or need a filling in one of the front teeth, as well as for small to moderately sized fillings needed for the back teeth. It is considered one of the safest dental fillings available today.

Get more information about composite dental filling options in these articles:

Do White Fillings Contain BPA?

How Long Does a Dental Filling Take?

Colgate estimates that dental filling appointments last about an hour or less. When you visit our office, the time you’ll spend with us varies somewhat depending on whether you are a new patient and what treatments you’re having done. Our staff can help you plan for your appointment time after booking with us.  

Do Dental Fillings Hurt?

At Green Dentistry, we want your dental filling procedure to be as comfortable and pain-free as possible. You’ll enter our spa-like office and immediately begin to feel at ease in our relaxing environment as you get ready for your restorative dentistry appointment.

We’ll take painless images of your teeth to identify the location of the decay and will apply a numbing solution to your gums in this area. At this time, you’ll feel a slight needle prick as we numb deeper into the tooth root so you will not feel any pain during the remainder of the process.

The pain after dental filling is usually mild and resolves within a few hours or days after the procedure. You can typically take over-the-counter pain relievers, however, we may prescribe pain medication in some cases where a patient has had extensive dental work done.   

How Long Do Dental Fillings Last?

How long your dental filling will last varies greatly depending on a number of factors, including the dental filling material you selected, your overall oral health, and the skill of the dentist performing the procedure.

Delta Dental estimates that on average, mercury dental fillings last between 10 to 15 years, while a composite dental filling lasts about 5 to 7 years. A temporary dental filling is designed to protect the tooth from food debris and bacteria and will be later removed and replaced with a traditional filling.

However, as noted above, the additional longevity of amalgam comes at a steep cost. It may benefit you to consider having your dental amalgam fillings removed. Learn more by reading our article, Is It More Dangerous to Have Mercury Fillings Removed?

What to Know About Dental Filling Cost

The average cost of dental filling treatment is relatively affordable, even if you have multiple teeth that require a filling. This cost is highly variable though and depends largely on the dental filling material you select, how many fillings you need, how large your fillings are, and any other services you book at the same time, such as imaging and cleaning.

At Green Dentistry, we’ll go over the dental filling price for your specific treatment before getting started so you know what to budget for.

Contact an Experienced San Francisco Dentist for Your Dental Filling Appointment Today

At Green Dentistry, we understand that going to the dentist is sometimes difficult and we strive to make your visit with us as pleasant as possible. We offer sedation dentistry options to make you more comfortable and will consult with you in depth before beginning your dental filling procedure.

Dr. Namrata Patel is a highly skilled San Francisco dentist offering some of the most innovative treatments available in dentistry today. When you book your dental filling appointment with us, you can trust that your oral health is in excellent hands.

Contact us today for more information about what to expect during your filling procedure or to set up a time to come in by calling 415-840-8992 or visit our online booking portal.

Visit Our San Francisco Dentist Office

Our modern dental office in Union Square is the first of its kind in San Francisco. You’ll find environmentally sustainable features and the latest technology throughout our space– including the furniture in the waiting room.

We believe that when our patients are comfortable they are less anxious and their dental deep cleaning treatments produce better results. That’s why we take pride in offering spa-like amenities, including:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Warm blankets and neck wraps
  • Essential oils & crystal healing
  • Noise-cancelling headphones

The Green Dentistry Difference

At Green Dentistry we strive to build life-long relationships with our patients so you feel secure about your smile for today and many years to come. We want you to feel confident in the work we do together to give you not only a beautiful smile but functionality and oral health to last a lifetime. We are also proud to give back - both to people who are in need and to the environment that surrounds us. We are excited to make you the newest member of our holistic dental care family.

“Everyone is always so helpful and courteous from the minute I enter their office lobby to the minute I leave.”

– Christian V.

Get A Healthy, Gorgeous Smile At Green Dentistry

We’re always accepting new patients. Our friendly and caring general dentist and staff can’t wait to meet you!

Frequently Asked Questions

What Causes Gum Disease?
Bacteria infect and cause inflammation in gum tissue. Many of our patients are surprised to learn they have gum problems despite brushing and flossing regularly. While it may be caused by poor brushing habits, this is not always the case. The natural pH and bacterial flora in your mouth, as well as your genetics can cause you to get gum disease no matter how well you brush and floss.

What Are the Most Common Symptoms?

If you receive frequent dental exams, it’s possible to prevent periodontal disease entirely or identify (and cure) it before any symptoms are present. Keep an eye out for these symptoms:

  • Red and swollen gums
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Dry mouth
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Chronic bad breath

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, speak with your dentist right away!

What Happens if I Don’t Get Treated?
Gum disease is not only painful it can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. Diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic health problems can be caused or worsened by poor oral health, including untreated gum disease.


Visit Our San Francisco Dental Office

Address: 360 Post St Ste 704, San Francisco, CA 94108
Phone: (415) 433-0119
Hours: Monday-Friday, 8AM-5PM,
Evenings & Weekends by Appointment Only

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