Things To Do After Your Dental Filling
If you are having a dental filling placed, there are a number of things you'll want to do to avoid complications following your procedure.
1. Do be careful when eating right after a dental filling.
Depending on the material that your filling consists of, you may need to be careful when you eat right after your appointment. Because composite white fillings harden instantly under the blue light your dentist uses, you can eat and drink immediately following the procedure.
If you feel hungry right after your appointment, some foods that would be good to eat include soup, scrambled eggs and crackers. Look for food that requires minimal chewing.
On the other hand, if there is pain and swelling, wait until it decreases before eating.
Metal dental fillings take a bit of time to harden, so most dentists will recommend waiting at least 24 hours after receiving the dental filling to eat any solid foods.
To avoid biting your lips, cheek, or tongue, you will likely want to wait until the local anesthetic wears off before attempting to eat. Ask your dentist for advice about when is the best time to eat after your filling.
2. Don't eat sticky, hard or extremely chewy food for at least 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.
3. Do take over-the-counter painkillers if you experience pain or discomfort of any kind.
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.
4. Make sure you continue to brush your teeth and 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.
5. Reach out to 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.