How to Tell When a Filling Has Come Loose

Loose dental filling Jackson MI dentists

A cavity is never really something you want to deal with. Regardless, they happen and receiving a tooth-colored filling from our Jackson, MI, dentists is a quick procedure. Sometimes, however, with certain factors at play, fillings can come loose and cause oral complications.

Here are a few indications that likely mean a filling has fallen out and when you should seek professional care.

Why Fillings Loosen or Fall Out

A dental filling can come loose for a variety of reasons. Potential causes can range from a new cavity that’s developed under or around the filling to teeth grinding at night. Whatever it ends up being, you’re left with the same result and should see one of our dentists so we can replace the filling.

Fillings may also be affected by:

  • Trauma, accidents, and facial injuries
  • Consumption of hard, sticky, or crunchy foods
  • Hard chewing while eating
  • Chemical reactions that affects the bond of the filling to the tooth

More often than not, it’s obvious when a filling starts to loosen up or falls out. For instance, some patients notice while they’re eating, brushing their teeth, or flossing. Still, it’s not always apparent, especially if the filling is small to begin with.

You May Have Lost Your Filling If You:

1. Experience Sharp or Unexpected Pain

Without a filling in place, your treated tooth is vulnerable. More specifically, the tissues underneath the lost filling are now exposed to outside factors like air, pressure, cold, and heat. This can lead to out-of-the-blue tooth pain when you least plan for it.

Though it can be disconcerting, you don’t need to panic when a filling falls out. What you do need to do is call our Jackson, MI, dental office and schedule a time where you can have the filling repaired by our dentists. You can also take over-the-counter pain medication as needed if the discomfort is hard to ignore.

2. See a Cracked Tooth or One With a Hole

If you take a look in the mirror while opening your mouth and see a noticeable hole or crack in a tooth, odds are you lost your filling. You should also be able to feel with your tongue where the filling once was.

Until you can be seen by one of our dentists, we recommend gargling with salt water to reduce any inflammation or bacteria buildup. Try mixing a half teaspoon of salt with 8 ounces of warm water and swish it around for 30 seconds before spitting it out. For extra protection, apply dental wax to temporarily fill the exposed hole or crack.

3. Are Noticeably Sensitive to Temperature 

As mentioned before, missing a filling means the inner portion of your tooth is susceptible to cold and heat. That means when you take a sip of that morning coffee or enjoy some ice cream, you might notice some heightened sensitivity.

Try avoiding foods or drinks that may irritate your tooth until your appointment. It’s also a good idea to not chew on the side where your sensitive tooth is located. We will do our best to have you come in as soon as possible so you’re not uncomfortable for long.

4. Discover Food Getting Stuck Where the Filling Was

Sometimes food can become trapped in your teeth after a meal or snack. It’s no different when a filling is gone. If you notice that bits of food are getting trapped in the exact same spot where your filling is, it could be because it has fallen out. Call our office and we’ll quickly replace your lost filling.

Get Your Filling Repaired

If you notice that one or multiple dental fillings have come loose, our dentists in Jackson, MI, can take a look. We can easily place a new filling and have you on your way in no time. Call The Dental Experience today at (517) 787-5367 to request an appointment.