White fillings (aka composite resins or porcelain inlays) offer an alternative to amalgam fillings. They are ideal in achieving long-term strength for filled-in teeth. Furthermore, one can hardly tell their presence because of their color. On top of all these benefits, they do not contain any mercury, so all the alleged adverse effects of amalgam fillings can be avoided.
When comparing the two types of dental fillings, the amalgam fillings do have a few advantages. For one, amalgam fillings are said to last much longer than white fillings (amalgam fillings can last 20 years or more). Secondly, resin fillings can only be placed (into a patients mouth) in certain environments, whereas amalgam fillings can be placed in dry or wet conditions. Finally, resin is more costly than amalgam making the resin fillings naturally more expensive.