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Do's and Don'ts After Dental Fillings

If you think you may have a cavity and your dentist confirms your suspicion, you'll need a filling placed. Today, our Burnaby dentists offer some advice about what to do and what not to after a filling. 

Do be careful about eating after a dental filling.

You may want to be careful about what you eat immediately after the filling procedure, depending on which type of dental filling was placed. Since composite white fillings instantly harden under the blue light used by your dentist, you can eat and drink immediately following the procedure. 

When perusing your grocery store's shelves for good food to eat following a tooth filling, look for food that will require minimal chewing. These might include crackers, soup and scrambled eggs. 

On the other hand, if you have pain or swelling, wait until it decreases to eat. 

If your dentist has placed a metal filling, these typically take a bit of time to harden. Most dentists will recommend waiting at least 24 hours after the filling is placed to eat any solid foods. 

You'll likely want to wait until the local anesthetic wears off before attempting to eat so you can avoid biting your cheek, tongue or lips. Ask your dentist for advice about when is the best time to eat after your filling.

Avoid chewy, sticky or hard foods for up to two weeks.

You may want to refrain from hot or cold drinks and foods for a few days following a dental filling. Sticky, hard or chewy foods are also a no-no - for up to two weeks. Anything that will require you to take hard bites and chew a lot - such as meat - is probably out.

You’ll also want to avoid highly acidic foods to prevent infection. 

Do take over-the-counter painkillers if you notice pain, discomfort or tooth sensitivity after a filling.

You may notice some mild to moderate discomfort and pain following the filling. The majority of the time, you should notice that pain and swelling decrease within 12 hours and you can eat whatever you want without experiencing tooth sensitivity, or irritation around the area.

Take over-the-counter painkillers with ibuprofen or acetaminophen to alleviate any physical pain or discomfort after a dental filling.

In the event, pain, sensitivity or discomfort do not disappear after 24 hours, contact your dentist to schedule an appointment to check on your filling, to ensure that infection is not developing.

Don't hesitate to brush your teeth or floss after a filling.

Did you know that you don’t have to wait to brush your teeth or floss after a dental filling? As long as you brush gently and floss carefully around the tooth, you should be able to keep the area clean as usual.

Do contact your dentist if you experience a persistent toothache

Though it's true that you may feel some mild pain or discomfort, a persistent sharp or throbbing toothache can indicate that the decay has reached your tooth's pulp. You may need a root canal. Contact your dentist, who can address it for you promptly.

Do you need to schedule a dental hygiene appointment? Please contact our Burnaby dentists today.

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