You’re out with your friends enjoying a nice meal when suddenly, you feel something strange in your mouth. It’s not food, but what could it be? Then you realize it’s your filling that’s fallen out. When this happens, it’s important not to panic. While that may be easier said than done, the best course of action is to stay calm and call your dentist in Brady. He’ll be able to walk you through the next steps toward treatment.
The Filling Fell Out, Now What?
As we mentioned earlier, don’t panic. Fillings fall out on occasion, and it’s certainly nothing out of the norm for a dentist. When this happens, your dentist will ask you a few questions about your symptoms and any concerns you have. You’ll have an x-ray taken, so your dentist will be able to thoroughly examine the tooth in question and determine the best method of treatment. Depending on the severity, there are a few options:
- Replace the filling with a new one
- Refer you to another dental professional for a root canal, crown, or cap
- Extract the tooth (this is extremely rare)
In most cases, a filling is replaceable, which means your dentist will restore your tooth with a new filling. Depending on the location of the tooth will determine the type of filling; however, most dentists find that patients prefer tooth-colored fillings because of their natural look and feel. Not only will people be unaware of any work that’s been done, but it will hold up better and provide a tight seal, preventing bacteria from creeping into the crevices.
It’s important to note that if you experience an extensive amount of tooth loss and a filling can no longer be considered as a viable restoration option, your dentist may need to place a crown or a cap to restore the integrity of the tooth. Also, in rare situations where the nerve of the tooth is exposed, it may be necessary to move forward with a root canal before placing a crown.
Preventing Future Fall Outs
While it’s important to practice good oral habits at home to prevent any problems with your restorations, all fillings, crowns, and bridges will need replacement. This is one of the reasons your dentist strongly encourages you to keep your six-month appointments so that he can review your restorations to make sure they are in good shape. And although nothing lasts forever, there are a few steps you can take at home to make sure your filling stays in place for a longer period of time.
- Wear a mouthguard. If you participate in any outdoor sports or recreational activities, and you want to prevent a dental emergency, make sure to wear protective dental gear.
- Avoid hard foods. While chewing on ice might be a thoughtless habit, biting into hard foods like ice or candy can damage your restorations and have you seeing your dentist sooner than you thought.
Lost fillings are unfortunate events, and if they’re not taken care of quickly, it can lead to pain, damage, and even tooth loss. Make sure to call your dentist as soon as a problem arises, so you can begin to discuss treatment options.
About the Practice
At Ritchie Dental Group, we offer restorative dentistry services to patients who’ve suffered damage to their smiles. We understand that having a beautiful, complete smile is important, which is why Dr. Greg Ritchie and his team offer tooth-colored fillings, dental crowns, dental bridges, and more. No matter the treatment, you can walk away with a more beautiful, confident smile. Let us help you with your dental needs. For questions, visit our website or call (830) 693-8833.