How To Know If Your Filling Needs To Be Replaced?

How To Know If Your Filling Needs To Be Replaced?

July 1, 2022

How long has it been since you had your dental fillings replaced? According to statistics, an average adult has at least one dental filling. Dental fillings are a restorative dental procedure used in treating tooth decay. They are placed on the tooth cavity after the decaying matter is removed despite dental fillings playing an essential role in protecting and preventing the spread of decay.

Dental fillings can last for years but, unfortunately, not forever. As time goes by, they wear and tear. So, how do you know it’s time for a replacement? For dental fillings that are due for replacement, one can tell them by visible damage or pain in the tooth. In addition, visiting a dental filling near you with concerns can help you avoid additional dental complications.

When To Know Your Fillings Need a Replacement

Dental fillings are made to be durable and last for several years. However, due to constant pressure caused by chewing, grinding, and clenching, dental fillings eventually require replacement. The following are signs that will tell you when you need a replacement of dental fillings in Houston, TX.

Cracked Dental Filling

Every day we are chewing, clenching, or grinding. This can cause dental fillings to wear out and eventually crack. Although this can happen years later, it can happen much sooner if you have bruxism. It may take time for one to know that their filling has cracked. While some cracks are easily visible, others can only be seen in an x-ray during your dental visits. It is essential to get the filling replaced to prevent bacteria from entering the tooth, causing decay.

Tooth Sensitivity

When a dental filling is missing or worn out, your teeth become sensitive to sweet, hot, or cold foods. It may also be sensitive to touch or when in contact with a toothbrush or dental floss.

Tooth Pain

Are you experiencing sharp, throbbing pain in the tooth with a filling? Pain is never a good sign when it comes to our oral health. The pain may be experienced while eating, drinking, or when you are not using your teeth. If your tooth is hurting, then it could mean that the filling has deteriorated and your tooth has developed a deep cavity. Our pediatric dentist Houston, TX, recommends our patients seek immediate treatment when they experience toothaches as this could prevent irreversible teeth damage such as necrosis.

Discolored Filling

If you have composite fillings, they can become brown or look slightly yellow with time. In addition, composite dental fillings can discolor due to the food or beverages you take. A replaced discolored packing will improve your teeth’ appearance giving you a brighter smile. Maintaining proper oral hygiene can also preserve the filling natural shade.

When The Filling Has Fallen Out

A fallen filling has to be replaced in good time to prevent infections. One can tell a filling is missing by feeling a gap in their teeth or finding the said filling in their mouth. Several factors can cause a filling to become loose and finally fall out. Some of these are:

  • Chewing hard or crunchy food substances
  • Tooth decay around the existing filling
  • Bruxism
  • Physical trauma to the tooth

Types of Fillings And Their Durability

Dental patients now benefit from choosing dental fillings that match their natural teeth. At Urbach Pediatric Dentistry, you will find various tooth-colored materials used to make dental fillings.

There are several factors considered when it comes to choosing a dental filling material. These factors include the tooth’s location, performance, cost, and durability of the filling.

Composite Fillings

These types of fillings are made of glass-like particles and acrylic resin. They have a natural look and don’t affect your teeth’s appearance. Composite fillings are fracture-resistant and for small to medium-sized-sized restorations. They are usually replaced after five years, while ceramic fillings can last up to seven years.

Metal Fillings

They are also known as Amalgam fillings, which are a combination of mercury, tin, silver, and copper. They are strong, inexpensive, and have a high resistance to wear. Together with gold fillings, metal fillings have a lifespan of between 15 to 20 years.

Glass Ionomers

Glass ionomers, other than restoring teeth, also provide extra protection with fluoride. They are made of fine glass powder that has fluoride and organic acid. If you are not sure what to choose for your dental filling, consult your pediatric dentist.

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