Tooth Pain After Filling

Fillings are a necessary means of treating and stopping tooth decay from progressing. Either temporary or permanent, they serve to fill the space that has decayed and to prevent bacteria from further damaging the tooth. Because dentists use a numbing agent to ensure that no pain is felt during the process of filling the tooth, fillings are generally painless, though some pressure might be felt. It is not uncommon, however, to experience some degree of tooth pain following a filling, particularly as the numbing agent wears off. While some small degree of pain is normal and not a cause for concern, increasing or sharp pain is not normal and should be reported to your dentist for examination right away.

Tooth Pain After Fillings: Causes

Most tooth pain following a filling is minor sensitivity and is more akin to bruising or localized tenderness than an actual injury. During the course of a filling, your dentist will first need to remove the damaged or decayed tooth matter before the hole can be filled; the pressure of the drilling can make that area feel a bit sore in the hours and days after the procedure. This pain should be minor and should go away gradually over the course of a week.

In some cases, teeth can become cracked or fillings can become loose. The kind of pain that these issues would produce would generally be sharper and more pronounced than the slight ache of tooth sensitivity. If you suspect that a filling is loose or a tooth is cracked, it is best to contact your dentist right away to have the tooth examined.

Very rarely, some patients can experience allergic reactions to dental fillings. This is usually limited to metal amalgams used to fill the cavities of patients who are allergic to certain metals. If you have or suspect any metal allergies, it is important to inform your dentist, who will then likely recommend either a dental composite or a porcelain filling.

Tooth Pain After Fillings: Treatment and After Care

If you have a recently had a filling and your mouth is feeling a bit tender, there are some things you can do at home to ease the pain. First of all, avoiding hot or cold foods and beverages can go a long way in easing the sensitivity that you are likely experiencing. Over the counter pain medications such as Tylenol or Advil can be taken as needed, though it is always best not to overuse these medications, as they can have an adverse effect on your overall health over time. Localized sensitivity can also be treated by simply using toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth, which you can likely find in your own neighborhood drug store.

In the days and weeks following a filling, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene. Continue to brush and floss twice a day, doing so gently. In addition to the special sensitivity toothpaste, soft floss can also be purchased as another aid in soothing tooth sensitivity.

Tooth Sensitivity After Filling

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