Your dentist may prescribe dental fillings if you have cavities. Although dental fillings are effective and can last a long time, you may experience tooth sensitivity after a filling. Tooth sensitivity may last a few days or weeks. If it does not subside within that period, you can contact your dentist for help.
What is Tooth Sensitivity?
Dental fillings replace the decayed area of the tooth, relieving any discomfort from the cavity. Before cleaning a decayed tooth and adding a filling, the dentist applies a numbing agent around the tooth. It is possible to feel numb, tingly, or like your cheek is puffy after having your filling. You may have difficulty talking or moving your face.
Tooth sensitivity after filling is among the most common side effects. You may feel minor discomfort while eating or drinking if you have sensitive teeth. Symptoms of tooth sensitivity may include a sudden cold or a sharp ache that comes and goes.
Causes of Tooth Sensitivity After Filling
It is not uncommon for dental fillings to cause some tooth sensitivity. These are some of the common causes of tooth sensitivity after a filling:
The filling procedure can make teeth more sensitive because it inflames the nerves inside the tooth. Dental fillings too close to the nerves cause irritation and discomfort. Tooth sensitivity subsides as the nerve heals which can take a few days or a couple of weeks.
Change in your bite
The filling on the affected tooth may be too tall relative to other teeth, resulting in misalignment of your bite. When this happens, the act of biting down can crack the filling, resulting in increased tooth sensitivity. If you suspect this is the reason for your tooth sensitivity, consult your dentist so they can adjust the filling.
Referred pain describes discomfort or sensitivity in teeth surrounding the tooth with a filling. Referred pain occurs because all your nerves are connected; when pain occurs in one location, it transmits a signal to your brain. Referred pain is when your brain sends that signal to another part of your body, making you think you’re feeling pain elsewhere. In the case of tooth sensitivity, the discomfort usually goes away within a few weeks.
Tooth sensitivity after a filling can result from an allergic reaction to the materials in the filling such as amalgam fillings. You may notice rashes or itching on your face. Although allergic reactions are rare with fewer than 100 reported cases, you can reach out to your dentist if you believe you have an allergic reaction to a filling. Radiant Smiles Dental Group offers metal-free white fillings to help you avoid allergic reactions.
Benefits of Getting Dental Fillings
Although you may experience some tooth sensitivity after dental fillings, they can help restore your teeth’s appearance and function. Dental fillings ensure your teeth and gums stay healthy by preserving their integrity.
Protect your teeth from further decay
Some of the warning signs of an infected tooth are toothache, tooth sensitivity, and red and swollen gums.
When you get a dental filling, your dentist removes the decayed part of the tooth and then fills the hole to repair the tooth. The early treatment of a cavity with dental fillings helps stop the onset of an infection and the need for more serious dental procedures such as root canals.
Severe tooth decay can lead to an infection in your blood called septicemia that can travel from the maxillary sinus to the brain.
Can last for decades
Depending on the filling material used, dental fillings can last for a long time. The lifespan of amalgam fillings can range from 15 to 20 years, while composite resin can last for only 7 years.
Provide more stability
Sports, accidents, or other vigorous activities can fracture your teeth. You can also break your teeth when you chew on hard items like ice or hard sweets. With dental fillings, you can preserve as much of your natural tooth structure as possible. A filling improves the tooth’s stability, so it can withstand the normal pressure applied when biting and chewing.
Improve tooth colour
If your teeth are discoloured from smoking, coffee or tea, or eating dark-coloured food such as berries, white fillings have become more desirable because of their metal-free nature. Since the materials in white dental fillings are porcelain and composite resin, they can blend in easily with your other teeth.
Less tooth sensitivity after filling
Composite resin does not transfer heat or cold like amalgam fillings. Its insulating properties protect it against hot and cold drinks and foods. Following your dental filling procedure with white dental fillings, you may experience only mild tooth sensitivity.
Contact Radiant Smiles Dental Group for More Information
Dental fillings are an excellent way to restore a decayed or broken tooth and protect it from further damage. If you are still unsure if dental fillings are right for you, contact Radiant Smiles Dental Group. A dentist can examine your teeth and discuss your concerns about the side effects including tooth sensitivity after filling.
You can book an appointment online or by calling Radiant Smile Dental Group on (03) 9000 0537.
Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
Why does my tooth still hurt after a filling?
Tooth Sensitivity Or Pain After A Filling: Is It Normal?
How to Handle Sensitive Teeth After Filling
Problems with Dental Fillings
Australia’s Oral Health Tracker Technical Paper
Dental Fillings Are Durable But Don’t Last Forever
How Long Do Fillings Last