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How Do You Know if You Need a Dental Filling?

May 15, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — e_anderson @ 5:26 pm
Woman holding mirror, inspecting her teeth

According to one estimate, more than 90% of adults over the age of 40 have had decay in their permanent teeth. Often, the best treatment for a small cavity is a filling, which can stop the spread of the decay, reduce sensitivity, and offer other benefits. How do you know if you need a dental filling? Read this blog post to discover some signs and symptoms that indicate you should visit your dentist.

You Might Not Notice Any Symptoms

It is important to keep in mind that cavities do not always cause obvious symptoms. While the decay is still in its early stages, it may only affect your enamel. If it has not deepened into the dentin (the second layer of teeth), you are less likely to notice that anything is amiss.

Therefore, regular preventive visits with your dentist are hugely important. They can identify spots of decay and provide treatment before you even realize that something is wrong.

Signs and Symptoms of Tooth Decay

If you notice any of the following, you should book an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible:

  • There is intermittent pain in a tooth.
  • A tooth is extra-sensitive to hot and cold temperatures.
  • Food always seems to get stuck in a certain spot on your tooth.
  • Your floss always seems to tear when you are cleaning a certain area of your mouth.
  • A tooth feels rough when you run your tongue over it.
  • You notice a visible hole or dark spot in one of your teeth.

You should also keep an eye on your old fillings. Although they are quite durable, they can become dislodged. If you ever notice that an old restoration has fallen out, you should strive to get it replaced as soon as your circumstances allow.

How Does a Dentist Decide if a Filling Is Necessary?

After a thorough examination that may include both a visual inspection and X-rays, your dentist will recommend your next steps. Depending on the severity of the decay, they might suggest that you:

  • Receive a fluoride treatment and increase your oral hygiene efforts. In some cases, very mild decay can be reversed without the need for a filling.
  • Receive a filling. Fillings are typically made out of a tooth-colored resin that blends in beautifully with the surrounding dentition. The treatment process is fast and comfortable.
  • Undergo more extensive restorative care. If a spot of decay is large enough, a filling might not be adequate to treat it. You might need root canal therapy, a crown, or other major services.

Do you need a dental filling? If you suspect that you do, your dentist is ready to assist you.

Meet the Practice

Dr. Erick Anderson and the team at Anderson Family Dental are proud to provide preventive and restorative oral health services for the Colorado Springs community. If you have questions about how to care for your teeth or what to expect during a dental filling procedure, we are ready to speak with you. Contact us at 719-593-0988.

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