Do I Need to Replace My Dental Filling?

October 24, 2017

It’s easy to forget about your fillings a few weeks after your procedure, but they aren’t actually a permanent solution. But don’t panic!

Even though your filling will need to be replaced eventually, if you take care of your oral health, it could last you a very long time.

What are Fillings?

A filling is a way to repair your teeth when they’ve been compromised by decay. Your dentist does this by removing the decayed part of your tooth using a drill and then filling the hole with a replacement substance.

Dentists fill teeth using:

  • Gold
  • Porcelain
  • Composite resin (tooth-colored fillings)
  • Amalgam (an alloy of mercury, silver, copper, tin and sometimes zinc)

The most common material used in modern dentistry is composite resin. These offer the advantage of blending in with your natural teeth.

How Long Will My Filling Last?

The answer to this question isn’t exactly black and white. The usual range is 7-20 years. This is a pretty wide gap, so to stay on the longer end of things, it’s important to take excellent care of your teeth. How long it lasts also depends on the location and size of your filling.

Fillings do not have an easy job. They are constantly under stress from eating, and that causes them to eventually loosen. This creates a pocket where food particles can collect and cause your teeth to decay.

It’s important to monitor your fillings carefully. Detecting issues early could save you from procedures, like extractions or root canals. For early detection, you’ll need regular checkups with an X-ray.

Is There a Warranty on Fillings?

Taking good care of your teeth goes a long way toward protecting your fillings, but their lifespan can be unpredictable. Luckily, if your filling needs to be replaced before five years have passed, Lone Tree Modern Dental & Orthodontics will refund you the full cost of the procedure.

To take advantage of this warranty, be sure to visit our office every six months. The “drill, fill, and bill” technique is not ideal for your health or wallet, so we discourage patients from traveling that route. We will only honor our warranty if you’ve been in for your regular cleanings.

The Best Kind of Filling is No Filling!

Fillings are an effective way to correct decay, but it’s better to not have the decay in the first place.

The best way to prevent decay is to brush twice a day, floss daily, avoid sugar and carbohydrates, and visit the dentist twice a year.