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Lost a Dental Filling? What’s Your Action Plan?

November 21, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — peeryfamily @ 8:28 pm
A man smiling after having his dental filling replaced.

Whether it’s a sudden crunch on a popcorn kernel or the gradual wear and tear over time, losing a dental filling can happen in an instant. Those who have gone through it before know it’s not a pleasant experience. If you haven’t yet had a dental filling come loose—that’s good! But what would you do if it did happen?

Continue reading to find a step-by-step guide to handle the situation if you find yourself with a lost dental filling.

1. Don’t Panic and Find the Filling

The first step is to stay calm and assess the situation. If you feel any discomfort or sensitivity in the affected tooth, take note of it. You’ll need to take action soon. Next, take a moment to find the missing filling. If you were eating, there’s a chance you swallowed it. If this isn’t the case, you’ll need to find it for confirmation.

Once you locate the filling, keep it in a container of some kind. Avoid using cleaners or soap on it. If need be, rinse it off with warm tap water. While it may not always be possible to reattach a dental filling it can still provide information to your dentist.

2. Contact Your Dentist

Reach out to your dentist as soon as possible to schedule an appointment. Explain the situation and provide details on when the filling was lost, any discomfort you’re experiencing, and whether you were able to retrieve the filling.

While a lost filling isn’t a dental emergency in most cases, it can lead to infection if not treated promptly. If you start feeling feverish, see pus around the tooth or gum, or feel pain in the area, then you should try to get an emergency appointment.

3. Take Precautions

Until you can see your dentist, you should take care of your tooth. You can gently brush the tooth, rinse with warm salt water, and use dental wax to temporarily fill the cavity. This can kill bacteria and help prevent food particles from accumulating in the crevice. It’s also a good idea to avoid chewing on that side of your mouth.

4. Prepare for Treatment

During your appointment, your dentist will assess the situation and discuss appropriate treatment options. This may involve replacing the lost filling, considering alternative materials, or exploring more extensive dental restoration based on the condition of the tooth.

Losing a dental filling can be disheartening, but with a good plan and professional care, you can beat it. The key to your success is preparation and acting promptly. Make sure you’re communicating with your dentist and taking care of yourself during the process. In no time at all, you’ll be back to smiling with renewed confidence.

About the Practice

At Peery & Woolwine Family Dentistry, you’ll find a dedicated team of dental professionals ready to work with you to fulfill all your smile goals. Using state-of-the-art dental technology and modern techniques, they provide a number of cosmetic and restorative treatments that are efficient and affordable. Call (434) 847-5331 to schedule an appointment or visit the website to discover other services.

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