Dental fillings also called “dental restorations,” are designed to replace the tooth structure that’s lost to decay. Although they may last many years, they eventually need to be replaced with new ones. The constant assault from drinking and eating or the stress that’s a result from clenching or grinding eventually may cause a dental filling to fail. Fillings that are worn away, chipped, cracked or fallen out may leave gaps between the tooth which will consequently turn to be an entry point for food particles and decay-causing bacteria. For that very reason, to avoid painful and costly procedures, it is of the essence to pay attention to some of the signs that indicate that it’s time for new fillings.
Composite resins (dental fillings) are designed to look like your natural teeth. However, over time, they may pick up stains and darken into an unattractive hue. When this happens, you should have your dental fillings replaced with new ones so that they can blend naturally with the rest of your teeth for a pearly white smile.
Wear and tear can eventually cause fillings to crack. Although it generally takes years before this happens, the problem can occur sooner if you tend to grind your teeth. Keep in mind that any opening in a tooth (even one as narrow as a crack) can be a path for bacteria to enter the tooth and cause decay.
Signs of Decay
If you take a closer look at your teeth, chances are you’ll spot decay. If the affected area involves your fillings, the best thing to do is make a dentist’s appointment as soon as possible. If not treated appropriately, tooth decay can cause further damage – if bacteria finds a loophole to enter your oral system it would eventually increase and multiply at great pace before it can be stopped.
Sensitivity to Cold Beverages
This is often a result of leaky or cracked fillings. The problem happens when the resin doesn’t adhere tightly to the sides of your teeth or when the filling is cracked. Although sometimes you may be able to see a crack in a filling, other times you might not know you have one until you make an x-ray of your teeth.
And the very obvious indicator – if you notice that your filling has fallen out, make a dentist’s appointment to address this problem. Bottom line is, regular dental examinations are the best way to detect problems with existing fillings. During the examination, your dentist will determine if the existing fillings are intact, or if any have cracked or worn away.