What to Expect Before, During, And After a Dental Filling

What to Expect Before, During, And After a Dental Filling

Jun 01, 2023

What Exactly Are Dental Fillings?

They are materials that repair damaged and diseased teeth. Dental fillings are renowned for restoring teeth after decay, wear and tear, or trauma. Dentists at Franklin Dental Care use dental fillings to repair and restore the cavities left behind after removing the decayed or damaged portion of the tooth.

Among the different types of dental fillings, the composite resin material that matches natural teeth colour is amassing more popularity today. Other dental fillings include silver amalgam, gold, and ceramic materials.

What Happens Before Dental Filling Treatment?

Before dental filling treatment, your dentist must perform a dental examination to evaluate your oral features and identify any areas of decay or damage that may require a filling. Part of the examination may necessitate X-rays to understand the decay’s extent better. This way, the dentist will know whether you can benefit from a tooth filling service near you or a treatment like a root canal therapy.

During the examination, the dentist will assess your medical history, probing about any medications you are taking, allergies, or past dental procedures. Next, the dentist creates a treatment plan involving a follow-up appointment to perform the filling procedure. The dentist may also instruct on caring for your teeth and gums before the procedure to avoid complications.

Afterwards, expect the following steps to precede your tooth fillings:

  1. Local anesthesia – is a treatment that numbs the area around the tooth, helping you feel more comfortable and experience a pain-free procedure.
  2. Isolation of the tooth – dentists use a dental dam or cotton rolls to isolate the target tooth, keeping it dry during the procedure.

​What to Expect During Your Dental Exam for Dental Fillings

The steps entailed in getting dental fillings in Oakland include:

  1. Removing the decayed enamel – dentists use drills or lasers to remove the damaged part of the enamel, preparing it for a filling.
  2. Applying the filling material – dentists use the composite resin or different filling material in layers before hardening it with a special light.
  3. Shaping and polishing the filling – after hardening, the dentist will shape and polish the hardened material to ensure it fits comfortably and matches the natural teeth.

What Happens After Dental Filling Treatment?

After dental filling treatment, it is a shared experience for patients to experience some minor discomfort and sensitivity for a few days. What you can expect after the treatment includes:

  1. Numbness – your mouth may remain numb for a few hours after the procedure. Dentists emphasize waiting to eat during this time to avoid accidentally biting your cheek, lips, or tongue.
  2. Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures, especially in the first few days after the procedure
  3. Discomfort and soreness in the area around the filling – may occur for a few days after the procedure. Over-the-counter pain medication, such as ibuprofen, will help alleviate any discomfort.
  4. Bite adjustment – when you bite down, the filled tooth may feel slightly uneven or high.
  5. Oral hygiene – maintaining a clean mouth is paramount for the success of the treatment. Be keen to brush and floss your teeth regularly, being careful around the area of the filling not to dislodge it.

​Tips For Preventing Future Cavities And Fillings

Generally, the best dental filling treatment will not mean much to your oral health if you do not know how to prevent future tooth cavities. Instead, here are some tips to prevent cavities and reduce the need for future fillings:

  1. Clean your teeth after meals with a toothbrush and dental floss. These measures remove food particles and plaque that can contribute to cavities.
  2. Use good products – fluoride toothpaste is a natural mineral that strengthens tooth enamel and prevents cavities.
  3. Limit sugary and acidic foods and drinks – they erode tooth enamel and contribute to cavities. When you consume them, rinse your mouth with water.
  4. Drink plenty of water – it washes away food particles and bacteria from the mouth to help prevent cavities.
  5. Chew sugarless gum – to stimulate saliva production, neutralizing acids in the mouth and preventing cavities.
  6. Get regular dental check-ups and cleanings – visit your dentist regularly to identify any areas of decay or damage early and recommend treatment to prevent further damage.
  7. Get dental sealants – thin plastic coatings applied to the back teeth as preventive measures to prevent cavities.

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