Like many types of dental restorations, tooth fillings do not always last for a lifetime. There are many reasons why your tooth filling may become loose and fall out, including the following:
- You might have more decay developing around the filling.
- You may be chewing too hard.
- You may eat sticky or gummy candy that pulls the filling out.
- The filling may no longer fit into your tooth properly.
Whatever the reason for your tooth filling falling out, remember to stay calm and follow these simple steps:
1. Remove the Tooth Filling from Your Mouth
The first thing you need to do when your tooth filling falls out is to remove all of the loose particles from your mouth, as this will prevent you from swallowing it. Do not play dentist and try to push it back into place (that will not work), and do not force further extraction – be sure to leave any secure parts of the filling that are still in place. Be careful not to chew on the loose pieces.
2. Call Your Dentist
Immediately contact your dentist in St. Paul to schedule an emergency appointment, and let the person on the phone know that you think you lost a tooth filling. The appointment will be especially urgent if you are experiencing tooth pain due to the loss of the filling. You may also ask for specific instructions while waiting for your tooth filling appointment.
3. Swish with Saltwater
The next thing you should do is make a solution of salt and water. Add 1.5 (one and a half) teaspoons of salt to 1 cup of warm (not hot) water. Swish some of the saltwater in your mouth for a few seconds at a time, then spit it out, to help keep the area clean. You will notice that this feels very comforting to your mouth. This solution can help kill oral microorganisms that may damage your exposed tooth. It should also remove any remnants of food in your teeth.
4. Fill the Void Using Dental Wax
Your tooth will probably bother you now because the sensation in your mouth is that something is missing – and your tongue will naturally keep running over that spot. While waiting for your dental appointment, you can use dental wax to temporarily fill in the cavity. Dental wax can be purchased at a pharmacy.
Once you get the dental wax, take a bit of the wax and gently push it into the space left by your filling. The wax will help to keep food particles and bacteria from entering the now-exposed tooth. It will also serve as protection for your tooth from scratching against your gums or other teeth.
5. Avoid Chewing with the Affected Tooth
Even with the dental wax’s protection, try your best to only chew with the other side of your mouth. Better yet, consume “safe foods” that do not require pressure when chewing, such as soup, oatmeal, or smoothies. Do this until you have your tooth filling replaced.
6. Take a Pain Reliever if Necessary
If you have pain and/or swelling, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever of your choice. If you do not have any on hand, you can gently apply a cold compress onto the affected area for 15 minutes at a time until the pain subsides. Be sure not to make your skin too cold, but wrap the compress in a cloth.
Dentist Providing Tooth Filling Services in St. Paul, MN
Here at Hagerman Dental Care, we are a full-service dental practice providing everything from dental cleanings to fillings, cosmetic dentistry, orthodontics, endodontics, and family dentistry. We use mercury-free fillings for no-worry dental care of our patients’ cavities.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Steven Hagerman at our office in St. Paul, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (651) 646-2392 or request an appointment via our online form now. Trust our experienced team with your dental health for a lifetime!