Dental fillings are one of the most common procedures performed by dentists, with teeth decay affecting thousands of Australians every year. Fillings are a restorative procedure that repairs and restores teeth that have been impacted by harmful cavities or trauma. Dentists start by removing the damaged area of the tooth and then replacing it with a filling material to rebuild it back to its original state and protect it from bacteria.
Fillings are a relatively mild and non-invasive procedure that can be done to fight decay and tooth damage in its early stages. They act as an alternative to more painful and expensive procedures such as dental implants and teeth extraction.
To avoid more serious dental work, it’s important that you both get regular dental checkups and know the warning signs of tooth decay. To help you do this, we’ve put this list of 5 of the most common signs that you may need fillings.
- Increased sensitivity
If certain teeth in particular are increasingly sensitive, this may be a sign that you’re experiencing dental decay. This sensitivity may make it difficult to chew and can be triggered by eating certain foods that are sticky or sour or by consuming particularly cold or hot beverages. If one of your teeth is constantly displaying signs of sensitivity then it’s a definite sign that you need to book an appointment with your dentist.
- Flossing string tears
If your dental floss always gets stuck and tears in between certain teeth, this is a telltale sign of dental decay or a build-up of tatar on your teeth. This causes an irregularity on their surface, making it difficult to floss without it getting caught or breaking during the process.
- Food gets stuck in between teeth
While it’s completely normal to get food stuck in between your teeth sometimes, be wary if it always gets stuck between the same teeth more than any other area of your mouth. This again is a sign of cavities and decay, which can easily trap the food in your mouth which can then cause the cavities or decay to then worsen and become more difficult to treat.
This happens because they wear down the enamel of your teeth, creating more crevices and holes for your food to get stuck in.
- Throbbing or sharp pain
Bacteria eating through the enamel of your teeth can cause significant pain, so if you’re feeling a constant sharp or throbbing pain from a certain tooth this may be why. While bacteria are a normal part of our mouths and body’s, too much bacteria from high-sugar foods can cause painful tooth decay and cavities.
- Visible holes in teeth
If you can see visible holes in your teeth, then this is a sign of untreated cavities that have grown over time. This happens when the erosion worsens over time and begins to seep into the tooth, causing it to grow as it’s left untreated. If you can see holes in your teeth, book an appointment with your dentist immediately.
While no one particularly looks forward to a trip to the dentist, it’s an important part of maintaining good oral health and avoiding the more dreaded treatments. Fillings aren’t ideal, but they do offer a simple and quick solution to cavities and decay that are efficient and long-lasting. Book an appointment with your dentist every six months or when you notice any of the signs we explained above.