Dental fillings are a restorative therapy to fix the teeth once the decay has been cured. However, dental fillings may get damaged due to wear and tear over time. How long a dental filling lasts depends on the materials that were used. So yes, dental fillings may need to be replaced. Let’s find out when.
Types of Dental Fillings
Amalgam Dental Fillings
Alloys of silver, copper, tin and elemental mercury are combined to create amalgam fillings, which are frequently referred to as silver or metal fillings. Due to their affordability and durability, amalgam fillings have been utilised by dentists for a very long time.
The lack of assurance regarding the safety of its mercury component has led to a decline in the usage of amalgam fillings. The majority of dentists concur that as long as previous silver fillings are in good condition, there is no need to replace them.
In recent years, composite resin has displaced amalgam as the material of choice for fillings.
These fillers have a strong, long-lasting surface because they blend an acrylic polymer with ground glass-like particles.
Many people choose these dental fillings because they may be customised to match the colour of their existing teeth. Composite resin is still fairly affordable despite being more expensive than amalgam, which is advantageous because they do not last nearly as long.
Glass ionomers are meant for non-biting teeth with minute cavities only. However, because it is so weak, this kind of filler is typically only employed temporarily.
Often, the material does not even need to be prepared before being applied to the tooth. Later, it might be simply removed and replaced with something more durable.
Ceramic and Gold Fillings
Gold and ceramic fillings are both pricey alternatives. However, gold fillings have a 30-year lifespan and may never need to be replaced. Ceramic fillings may chip or crack but can endure up to 25 years. Gold pops out in contrast to ceramic fillings, which seem like natural teeth.
How Long Does a Dental Filling Last?
Filling materials come in a variety of durability levels. The various forms of dental fillings typically last between:
- Amalgam fillings: 15 years
- Composite resin fillings: 7 to 10 years
- Ceramic fillings: 15 years
- Gold fillings: 15 to 30 years
- Glass Ionomer fillings: 5 to 7 years
These are, however, merely average estimations. Dental fillings may need to be replaced by dentists considerably more quickly.
A bad diet high in sugar and insufficient dental hygiene might increase the chance of developing new cavities under or surrounding a filling. It can also be damaged by constant teeth clenching.
Do not ignore cracked dental fillings. It can cause harm in the long run. Call us today!
7 Signs a Dental Filling Needs to be Replaced
1. The Dental Filling’s Colour has Changed
Some dental materials are made specifically for their durability and beauty. The fabrication of ceramic and porcelain fillings ensures that they blend in with the existing tooth structure. As a result, it may be necessary to change the filling if you detect it changing colour, getting darker, or turning yellow.
If the metal in a metal filling begins to discolour, this may also mean that the filling needs to be replaced.
2. Wear and Tear in the Filling
Fillings may only degrade with use over time. When it comes to older metal fillings, this is more likely to occur. You can see that it no longer fits as securely as it once did if your filling is beginning to deteriorate.
Additionally, you can experience a shift in how your teeth feel when you chew or bite. Visit your dentist right away if you experience any of these changes so they can evaluate if your dental filling needs replacing.
3. The Filling has Cracked
A replacement filling may also be necessary if the current one fractures or chips. You could experience this if you clench your teeth or if something strikes your tooth forcefully. Your dentist might be able to simply patch the filling if the break is minimal. However, you could require a new filling if the fracture is significant.
4. The Dental Filling has Decayed
The degradation under the current filling is the most frequent cause of a replacement filling being required. This can occur over time when food and germs get trapped beneath the filling.
Early detection of the deterioration may allow your dentist to simply replace the filling. The decay, however, might spread and harm your teeth further if it is not addressed.
5. An Allergy has Occurred
In rare instances, you could become allergic to the filler ingredient. Metal fillings are more likely to cause this.
You can suffer symptoms including swelling, stinging, and redness around the filling if you become allergic to it. Visit your dentist right away so they can evaluate the issue if you suspect you could be allergic to your filling.
Is your dental filling giving you trouble? Schedule an appointment with us today!
6. Your Tooth Hurts
In addition to how your filling looks, tooth discomfort may also indicate that it needs to be changed. This can manifest as an ongoing toothache and soreness, as well as sharp, intense dental pain brought on by heightened sensitivity to cold or hot food.
Both sorts of discomfort might suggest that the filing needs to be redone since it is no longer tightly sealing the tooth.
7. The Filling has Fallen Out
You must have your filling replaced right away if it has fully fallen out in order to avoid developing a tooth infection. You could feel a gap where the filling formerly was in your tooth as it fell out.
Additionally, your filling might become loose in some circumstances. In these situations, it is still preferable to get your filling changed before it totally falls out.
Visit your dentist as soon as possible if you think there could be an issue with your filling. We provide a range of dental services at Complete Smiles, including fillings. If you require a new filling, we can evaluate the problem and decide. Additionally, we will collaborate with you to identify the best filler material for you. Contact us immediately!