Fillings are incredibly important – they fill in gaps of your tooth that could otherwise be filled with bacteria. Most often, fillings are used to get rid of cavities – if a filling falls out, it’s similar to having that cavity all over again. There are differences, of course. Cavities are caused by active bacterial decay, and those bacteria probably haven’t had the chance to reestablish themselves behind your filling. You don’t want to give those bacteria any chances, though, and in some cases the filling falls out because of bacterial decay.
What’s more, you might find that the area where the filling fell out is causing you pain. This is often due to sensitivity to pressure, heat, or cold – but it might be because of a different underlying problem.
How long you should wait before getting a new filling
All this means that you shouldn’t wait before getting a new filling. You should call your dentist the moment your filling falls out – even if you feel your filling getting loose, you should get in touch with your dentist.
The lifespan of fillings
The lifespan of fillings can vary substantially – gold and amalgam fillings can last upwards of 20 years, while composite fillings usually last around 10-15 years. All these fillings will have a shorter lifespan, however, if there’s been damage or decay around them.
If a filling only lasted months or a couple of years, it’s likely that either it was fitted improperly or that the tooth sustained damage. While time is of the essence in getting any filling replaced, it’s particularly important to get it checked on if the filling didn’t last very long.
In cases where the filling fell out early due to being improperly fitted, your dentist may replace it for free.
Why it’s important to get your filling replaced as soon as possible
You want to make an appointment with your dentist to, at the very least, figure out why the filling fell out. If it was a result of decay caused by bacteria, it’s something you want to know about as quickly as possible so you can stop the decay. You may also need a more intensive procedure, like a root canal, to prevent more damage or loss of the tooth.
Getting the filling replaced means your tooth won’t be as susceptible to problems – bacteria love finding holes they can crawl into and breed in, and the filling prevents them from doing that. It will also reduce the amount of pain you might feel due to pressure, heat, and cold.
We can help you replace your dental fillings in Winnipeg – if your filling falls out, get in touch with us, and we’ll schedule you in as soon as possible. While a fallen filling isn’t an emergency, it is something we want to address right away! It can be useful to keep the fallen filling for diagnostics, so if you have it, bring it in!