What Should I Do If a Filling is Loose?
Dental fillings offer an excellent way to restore a tooth damaged by tooth decay. Although fillings are usually very durable, they can become loose sometimes. Dr. Ralph Mazzuca, who practices cosmetic dentistry in Washington, DC, discusses why fillings become loose and explains what you should do if you notice a loose filling.
Why do fillings become loose?
Fillings can loosen due to a variety of reasons, including:
- You Bit into a Hard Food or Object: Biting into hard foods, such as carrots or nuts, can loosen fillings. Fillings can also become loose if you use your teeth as tool and open packages with them. In addition to loosening fillings, biting hard food and objects can cause your teeth to crack or break.
- You Grind Your Teeth: Grinding your teeth while you sleep exerts considerable pressure on your teeth and can cause loose fillings.
- Your Filling is Old: Fillings generally last seven or more years, depending on the type. After years of wear and tear, your filling will eventually wear out and need to be replaced. In some cases, your dentist may recommend replacing it with a crown instead of a new filling, particularly if the filled area is large.
- You Have New Decay Around the Filling: Tooth decay can contribute to loose fillings.
What should I do if I have a loose filling?
Call Dr. Mazzuca as soon as you notice that your filling is loose. When you visit his Washington, DC office, he'll examine your tooth and offer treatment options, which may include a new filling or a crown.
If your filling is completely gone, the pulp of your tooth may be exposed. Every time air hits the pulp, you may experience pain. Applying a temporary filling material, available at drugstores, will seal the tooth until your appointment with Dr. Mazzuca. Although this material will help ease your pain, it's not intended as a permanent replacement for lost fillings.
Do you need a new filling or other cosmetic dentistry treatment? Call Dr. Mazzuca, your Washington, DC dentist, at (202) 537-1088 to schedule an appointment. Protect your smile with regular dental care!