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When is tooth filling replacement necessary?

Your teeth may be cracked or broken due to decay. Fillings can protect the teeth and the structure around the teeth for up to 15 years. But if the filling is broken, the sides are open or there is decay under it, it is necessary to replace the filling. Failure to replace dental fillings can cause tooth breakage and cracking, infection, or abscess. It may even jeopardize the long-term health of your teeth. You can find out if your filled teeth need to be replaced at home by following the signs and symptoms and performing proper dental care.

1- Is your tooth sensitive?

If your teeth have fillings that need replacing, chances are you’ll feel it from the start. You can tell if it is time to replace the fillings by checking the physical signs of old or decayed fillings. Sensitive teeth to temperature, sweets, or pressure are one of the signs that your fillings may need to be replaced.

  • Be careful when chewing any cold, hot, or sweet food. It is possible that you may feel sensitivity or momentary pain after food comes in contact with your tooth, which could indicate the need for a filling replacement.
  • Be careful that your tooth may be sensitive to touch with a finger, toothbrush, or other dental tools.
  • If your teeth are sensitive, use fluoride toothpaste made specifically for sensitive teeth, such as Sensodyne or Pronamel.

2- Pay attention to the pressure on your teeth while eating.

You may sometimes feel pressure on your teeth while chewing. You may experience this sensation for a few seconds or more, which could be a sign of damage to your filling or damage to the pulp of your tooth.

  • If you feel pressure in your teeth while chewing, chew slowly. This will help you to more easily identify which filling of your tooth has a problem.

3- Identify severe or throbbing pain.

You may also feel a sharp and throbbing pain in your teeth in addition to the feeling of pressure in your teeth. You may feel this pain while eating or drinking or in a normal position. It is possible that the pain also disappears quickly like pressure or lasts for a few seconds. Noticing a sharp or throbbing pain in a particular tooth or teeth, especially if it’s accompanied by other symptoms, can help you determine if a filling needs to be replaced.

  • Winter and cold weather can also cause your teeth to become overly sensitive, which can indicate the need to replace tooth fillings.

4- Continuous toothache can be a symptom.

Some people who have fillings that need to be replaced may experience a toothache. Pain may be temporary or permanent. A toothache is usually caused by inflammation in the tooth pulp, so a filling that needs to be replaced can cause a toothache. If your toothache lasts more than two days, visit your dentist to prevent your dental health from being compromised.

  • If the duration of toothache is long, it can lead to severe inflammation of the pulp, which eventually causes necrosis without pus and tooth abscess.

Recognizing the visual signs for replacing dental fillings

1- Check the cavities or blackened parts of the teeth.

In addition to any physical symptoms, you may be able to find signs that your dental fillings need to be replaced. One of these symptoms is the observation of holes or dark spots. You may notice these symptoms every day while brushing or flossing. Paying attention to these symptoms and receiving appropriate treatment quickly can minimize the risk of infection in the oral cavity.

2- Check the dental floss for tears and the presence of food particles.

If you floss daily, pay attention to it every time you floss between your teeth. You may notice broken floss or pieces of food stuck between the teeth. These indicate that you may have a cracked tooth or fillings that need to be replaced.

  • Pay attention to which tooth breaks the floss or always gets food stuck in it. These symptoms will help your dentist better determine which filling needs to be replaced, but in this case, an X-ray is necessary.

3- Check the tooth surface for roughness.

Most people like to have clean and smooth teeth. You may notice that one of your teeth does not have a smooth surface even after brushing and flossing. This may be an indication that the filler needs to be replaced.

  • Take care of the teeth and check if anything makes the tooth rougher or less rough. If the tooth roughness does not decrease, inform your dentist.

4- Look for a broken, cracked, or missing filler.

In some cases, you can tell if the filler needs to be replaced. If you have physical symptoms, check to see if you have a broken, cracked, or missing filling in your mouth. If you want to be sure if you need a filling replacement, see your dentist.

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water before putting your hands in or near your mouth. This can reduce the risk of harmful bacteria entering your mouth.

5- Identify broken teeth or chapped lips.

Even if you can’t find a faulty filling, a broken tooth or a discolored lip may need a filling. If you have physical symptoms, but can’t see any broken, cracked, or missing fillings, check around your teeth. Your teeth may be chipped or broken, so you should see a dentist.

  • Use your tongue to detect sharp or broken edges. If food gets stuck in it every day, it’s a sign that your old filling needs to be replaced.
  • Cracks and chips may be so small that they cannot be detected by the eye.

Before identifying broken teeth, wash your hands with soap and water. This can prevent oral and dental infections.

6- Determine what kind of filling your tooth is.

There are different types of dental filling materials, each of which has a different lifespan. If you know what type of filling you have when filling your teeth, you will also know when to replace it. Note that the durability of the fillings also depends on how well you take care of your oral health. Your fillings may last longer if you take good care of your teeth and gums. The different types of fillers and their average lifespan are given below:

  • Gold fillings can last up to 15 years.
  • Silver-colored amalgam fillings can also last up to 15 years.
  • Composite fillings, made of materials that match the color of your teeth, may need to be replaced after five years.
  • Ceramic fillings can last up to 7 years.

See a dentist

1- Visit the dentist.

The only way to know for sure if you need a filling replacement is to visit your dentist. Also, only a dental specialist can replace your tooth filling correctly. If you notice signs or symptoms of the need to replace the filling, see your dentist as soon as possible. This will help you heal quickly and minimize the risk of developing an abscess.

Explain to your dentist’s secretary why you are visiting the dentist. By doing this, you may be able to get an earlier appointment.

2- Get examined.

The dentist will thoroughly examine your filled teeth to see if your fillings need to be replaced. Discuss any symptoms you have with your dentist, so that he can consider the appropriate treatment for you based on your medical history and examination results.

  • Explain your symptoms to the dentist in detail. This can help your dentist better determine whether or not you need to replace your dental filling. For example, you can explain: “I feel a sharp pain in my tooth that affects my entire tooth.”
  • Allow your dentist to examine your teeth with dental forceps. With this tool, your dentist can gently examine your teeth and fillings and detect wear and stains.

3- Take a picture.

In some cases, a dental filling may appear healthy but still need to be replaced. Because it may have a small crack or cavity that can cause tooth decay. Your dentist may want to check for problems between your teeth that are not visible to the naked eye. If your dentist doubts his diagnosis, he will likely suggest further tests, such as x-rays or an elucidation test. These tests can help your dentist in Canada provide you with the most appropriate treatment.

  • X-rays are necessary to check for decay under a filling or to check the margins of fillings between teeth.
  • Also, your dentist may order a periapical radiograph, another type of X-ray to examine the mouth and to check for root damage.

4- Consult your dentist about tooth-filling replacement options.

Your dentist may determine that you need to replace your dental fillings. If so, check with your dentist about your options. You may be able to repair your old dental filling, or you may need a complete replacement. Consulting with a dentist about different treatment options can ensure proper treatment and care without additional costs and worry about the condition.

  • Ask your dentist what filling material is best for you if you need to replace the filling.

5- Check your teeth regularly.

Prevention can be one of the best ways to maintain the health of teeth and prevent premature replacement of dental fillings. Regular examinations by a dentist can help detect fillings that need to be replaced before complications such as tooth decay or pulp develop.


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