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Do's and Don'ts After Dental Fillings

Fillings are necessary for the treatment of cavities and there are some things you should know when it comes to caring for them. Our Napanee dentists talk about the 'do's' and 'don'ts' after receiving dental fillings.

Do watch what you eat after a dental filling.

Before jumping into a meal right after your filling was placed you will need to consider the type of dental filling that you received. Because composite white fillings harden instantly under the blue light your dentist uses, you can eat and drink immediately following the procedure.

Some options for good foods to eat following a tooth filling include soup, scrambled eggs and crackers. We typically recommend foods that are easy to chew and swallow.

However, if you are experiencing swelling or any discomfort then you should wait for these to resolve themselves before you begin to eat.

Metal dental fillings take a bit of time to harden, so most dentists will recommend waiting at least 24 hours after receiving the dental filling to eat any solid foods.

To avoid biting your lips, cheek, or tongue, you will likely want to wait until the local anesthetic wears off before attempting to eat. Ask your dentist for advice about when is the best time to eat after your filling.

Don't eat or chew on foods that are hard or sticky for 2 weeks.

Try to stay away from foods or drinks that are either hot or cold. Your teeth will likely be extra sensitive. Sticky, hard or chewy foods are also a no-no - for up to two weeks. Anything that will require you to take hard bites and chew a lot - such as meat - is probably out.

Avoiding foods that are highly acidic might also help decrease the chance of infection.

Do take pain relief medication as needed after dental fillings.

You may notice some mild to moderate discomfort and pain following the filling. The majority of the time, you should notice that pain and swelling decrease within 12 hours and you can eat whatever you want without experiencing tooth sensitivity, or irritation around the area.

Take over-the-counter painkillers with ibuprofen or acetaminophen to alleviate any physical pain or discomfort after a dental filling.

In the event, pain, sensitivity or discomfort does not disappear after 24 hours, contact your dentist to schedule an appointment to check on your filling, to ensure that infection is not developing.

Don't hesitate when it comes to brushing your teeth afterward.

One important piece of advice is that you won't have to brush your teeth after you've had a dental filling. As long as you brush gently and floss carefully around the tooth, you should be able to keep the area clean as usual.

Do contact your dental care team if you have ongoing pain or discomfort.

Though it's true that you may feel some mild pain or discomfort, a persistent sharp or throbbing toothache can indicate that the decay has reached your tooth's pulp. You may need a root canal. Contact your dentist, who can address it for you promptly.

Are you in need of a preventive or restorative dental care appointment? Please contact our Napanee dentists today to request a visit.

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