What to Do if a Filling Falls Out

By Aaron Strickland, D.D.S. on August 14, 2018


There is something extremely alarming about a lost filling. But don't panic! This usually isn’t usually a dental emergency, but it can cause pain or sensitivity on the exposed part of your tooth and make eating more difficult. It can also make the tooth more susceptible to decay by allowing bacteria to enter hard-to-reach places within the exposed tooth. So, what should you do if your filling falls out? The short answer: call us. The long answer: see below. 

What should I do if my filling comes out?

Remove the filling from your mouth.

 If you didn’t accidentally swallow the filling, remove it from your mouth. You don’t have to save it for us, but your kids might think it is kind of cool.

Call us for an appointment.

Like we said before, it’s probably not a dental emergency, so we’ll set up an appointment to take care of you as soon as possible. However, we know that having a damaged area exposed in your mouth can cause pain and intense sensitivity. If this is the case, we definitely want to get you in the office for immediate treatment, so call right away. 

Check out some over-the-counter solutions.

If you cannot make it in to the office right away, you may want to check out some over-the-counter solutions that will cover exposed cavities, such as a temporary filling repair kit. You can also use some over-the-counter pain medications, such as Tylenol or aspirin, to alleviate mild pain.

Be dedicated to good oral hygiene.

 After you eat or drink anything (and we mean anything!), rinse your mouth with warm water, and brush well after every meal. Having a damaged part of your tooth exposed can lead to further decay if bacteria is allowed to enter, so be absolutely dedicated to your oral care until your appointment.

What causes a filling to fall out?

There are a few reasons a filling may come loose. One common reason is ongoing decay. It’s possible that decay has worked its way in between the tooth and the filling, slowing eroding the tooth structure under the filling. This will eventually cause the filling to not be as secure as it originally was.

Another common cause is trauma of some kind. If the tooth is cracked or chipped, the filling will not be as tightly-fitting as it once was.

And lastly, years of clenching and grinding of teeth may cause the filling to come loose.

It’s important to understand that no filling materials are going last forever. Eventually, they will need to be replaced. As long as you are coming in for regular dental cleanings, we can keep a close eye on your filling and make recommendations for when we think it’s time to have them replaced.

You can be proactive in maintaining the health of your filling and your overall oral health by continuing to maintain good oral hygiene and visiting us for a regular dental cleaning. Connect with us on Facebook, submit the online contact form below, or give us a call today at (812)378-2041.




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