When you get a cavity, your dentist can easily treat this form of tooth decay by drilling away the damaged part of a tooth and restoring its health with a dental filling. The filling is composed of resin applied to the resulting hole in the tooth that a dentist cures and polishes for a durable and beautiful finish.
This dental fixture is common, but many people do not realize that this treatment does not endure forever. Read on to learn more about the longevity of dental fillings and how you can get the most benefits from this restorative dental treatment.
How Long Do Dental Fillings Last?
A dental filling is a long-term restorative solution for a tooth that has sustained damage from decay. The resin used to fill the hole from a cavity is malleable to suit your unique dental reshaping needs. Then the dentist cures it to harden it into place.
There, the filling will adhere to the tooth for restoration that can last for about ten years with proper care and maintenance. It will endure the regular wear and tear that your teeth experience from chewing and biting. And the resin creates a seal over this vulnerable part of the tooth, protecting the interior from bacteria and other dangers.
Can a Dental Filling Fall Out of a Tooth?
Though durable, a dental filling is not indestructible. In cases of abnormally high pressure, a filling might wear down or fall out. If this occurs, then the underlying tooth is now exposed and at risk of plaque and other threats.
Call your dentist as soon as you can if your filling falls out or feels loose. Other symptoms might include tooth sensitivity pain. Your dentist can replace a loose or worn filling during an emergency dentist appointment.
Biting on hard items or at an improper angle could damage a dental filling. But the filling could also wear down over time due to chronic behaviors like teeth grinding and clenching. Ask your dentist for help treating these habits to preserve your dental filling.
How Do I Care for a Dental Filling?
As mentioned, the care you take with your dental filling can help it last longer in your smile. You should avoid extreme pressures on this dental work, including bruxism.
But you should also continue your regular good oral habits, including proper oral hygiene. Brush your teeth twice a day at least, floss on a daily basis, and visit your dentist for routine teeth cleanings. These efforts keep plaque and other harmful residues from eating away at your teeth and altering your dental structure.
Changes in your smile caused by this type of dental damage could impact the fit of your filling. Dental damage could make it more likely to fall out. For this reason, you should also steer clear of acidic and sugary foods in your diet that could also erode your tooth enamel. Consult with your dentist about other habits you can employ at home to protect your dental filling.