POST-OPERATIVE INSTRUCTIONS FOR FILLINGS
- Minor discomfort or sensitivity is common after a filling, usually this is most noticeable the first 24 hours after anesthetic wears off. Gum tenderness at the site of the injection or around the tooth is common. Rinsing with warm salt water will assist in healing the soft tissue irritation. Place 1 tsp. of salt in 1 cup of water, swish and spit out.
- Sensitivity, especially with cold, may occur for several days to weeks following your filling placement. Generally the deeper the cavity, the more sensitive your tooth may be. Over time this should decrease.
- You may take Ibuprofen (Advil) or Acetaminophen (Tylenol) to assist with any tenderness or discomfort you may have, provided you do not have an allergy or medical consideration that prevents you from taking these medications.
- In the case of composite (white) fillings, the material is fully set by the time you leave the office. Once the anesthetic wears off you may eat and drink as normal.
- Amalgam (silver) fillings require a full 24 hours to set, these fillings should not be chewed on until the next day.
- Children should be monitored until numbness wears off; oftentimes children will pick or chew on their lips, cheeks or tongue due to the strange sensation of being numb.
- Your filling may feel different from your natural teeth or other fillings. Your tongue will amplify this sensation initially but you will become accustomed to the feeling of it in a few days.
- If you feel like your bite is off or you are contacting on the filling harder than your other teeth, you may need a bite adjustment. Please call our office if this is the case.
- Fillings do not last forever. Over time they can wear and breakdown. Flossing and brushing twice a day, as well as routine dental checkups every 6 months will help you retain your fillings as long as possible.