Do Fillings Have to Be Replaced?

Every year, millions of people see a dentist and walk away with a filling in their tooth where a spot of decay had formed. Fillings are one of the most effective ways to stop the deterioration of the tooth, but having one can bring about a few questions. One specific question patients tend to have is whether or not a filling ever has to be replaced. Here is a look at the answer to that question and a few other things to know about dental fillings.

All Fillings Do Eventually have to Be Replaced

A well-placed dental filling can last for many years before it starts to break down. However, the materials will eventually break down and need replacement. When dental filling breakdown occurs, it allows bacteria to get into the tooth and start to encourage new decay. The time it takes for a filling to breakdown can be related to:

  • Where the filling is placed; fillings in teeth primarily responsible for chewing may break down faster
  • What type of filling material you have (e.g. composite, amalgam, etc.)
  • The size of the filling

How Do You Know If a Filling Needs to Be Replaced?

One of your best plans of action is to follow a good routine when it comes to general dentistry checkups. It can be difficult to see that a dental filling has worn to the point that it should be replaced. The bond between the tooth and the filling may be interior where it can’t be seen, so if the bond breaks down, you may not notice much of anything. Of course, once a filling breaks down enough, it can fall out, which is an obvious sign that the filling should be replaced.

Let’s Talk About Dental Fillings in Athens, TX

A filling can be the number one thing protecting a tooth from further decay. If you believe you have a filling that needs to be replaced, don’t delay. Reach out to us at Athens Smiles Family Dental in Athens to schedule an appointment to have your dental filling assessed and replaced as needed.

Prevailing Myths About Tooth Extractions

When a tooth has grown to the point that it can likely not be saved, it may have to be extracted. Decay, dental trauma, and severe crowding are all common reasons for tooth extraction. Here is a look at some of the unfortunate myths about getting a tooth extracted patients should know.

Myth: Most dentists prefer to extract a tooth instead of saving it.

Every good dentist is going to go to great lengths to try to save an ailing tooth before deciding that it should be extracted. Removing a tooth permanently affects your smile, and while solutions are available for restoration, natural teeth and natural root systems attached to the bone are always preferred. If the dentist is recommending a tooth is extracted, you can rest assured they have considered:

  • The overall condition of the tooth
  • The probability that the tooth could be saved
  • The way the tooth should be extracted for the greatest chance of restoration

Myth: Extractions are one of the most painful dental procedures.

Extractions can be painful, but you should not feel anything when the procedure is performed. The dentist will use a combination of techniques to make sure you are as comfortable as possible throughout the procedure. You may feel some pressure as the roots of the tooth are removed from the bone, but there should be no pain experienced. After the procedure, anesthetic given during the procedure will gradually wear off. At this point, you may feel a bit of discomfort, but it is usually nothing that over-the-counter pain medications can’t normally relieve.

Myth: Most people have problems after a tooth is extracted.

On the contrary, the majority of tooth extractions are performed without any problems. Most patients will experience minimal pain and discomfort and see the gum tissue start to heal up and close soon after the procedure. If an issue occurs, it is usually an issue that can be treated relatively easily. For instance, problems with prolonged bleeding can be tended to with temporary packing for the wound done by the dentist.

Talk to an Athens Dentist About Tooth Extraction

If you have a tooth that needs to be extracted, it is important that you don’t wait to seek treatment. Reach out to us at Athens Smiles in Athens, TX to schedule an appointment.