When you get a cavity, you have to get it filled. To do this, your dentist first clears out the area of decaying tooth. Then, when the area is clear, your dental team fills that space to seal the area from further decay. Generally, those fillings last patients from five to 20 years.
However, the life span of your dental fillings relies on a few very important factors. For example, both your personal oral hygiene and the number of regular dentist visits determine the long-term effects of your fillings. If you experience any pain or sensitivity where you had a filling, that means that it’s probably time to replace it. Visit us at Smile On Dental Studio in St. Louis to see if your filling needs replacement.
Good Oral Hygiene At Home
Brushing, flossing, and scraping your tongue are the most important at-home oral hygiene practices. You have to brush your teeth at least twice a day–once in the morning and once at night. When you brush, be sure to scrub the front, back, and top of each tooth.
Flossing is just as important, however, we only recommend flossing one time each day. When you floss, rub the floss up and down on each side of your tooth. The ADA recommends using 18 inches of floss so each tooth gets a new section. This way, you don’t spread plaque throughout your mouth, increasing the risk of gum disease.
Scrubbing or brushing your tongue also prevents the spread of bacteria, which causes gum disease. We recommend cleaning your tongue at least once a day as part of your oral hygiene routine.
Regular Dentist Visits
Visiting your dentist every six months for regular cleanings is just as important as your daily routine. When you visit Dr. Hill, he will remove plaque buildup in all those hard-to-reach spots. Fortunately, this includes the crevices in your fillings.
Plaque and bacteria buildup, if left untreated, cause both enamel and fillings to break down. When your tooth’s outer layer begins to decay, you will start to feel pain or uncomfortable sensitivity in your teeth. Avoid the discomfort in the first place by visiting us regularly at Smile On Dental Studio.
Stay Away from Things that Damage Your Fillings
Other than regularly cleaning your teeth, there are a few things you can do to keep your fillings healthy and strong. Just like your natural teeth, composite fillings can crack or break under excessive pressure. Remember to be careful when you eat hard or crunchy foods like ice or candy.
Furthermore, if you are prone to grinding your teeth, this could result in replacing your fillings more often. If teeth grinding concerns you, come talk to Dr. Hill about your options and treatments that could help.
Your Preventative Dentist in St. Louis
If your teeth are sensitive or painful, it’s time to see your general dentist. Schedule an appointment with Smile On Dental Studio in St. Louis by calling (314) 678-7876. Easily schedule an appointment with our dentists by messaging us online.