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My Filling Fell Out. What Do I Do?

November 2nd, 2020

Firstly, don’t panic!  

Secondly, try to preserve the filling by spitting it out in a tissue so you can take it to your dentist.

Thirdly, call your dental office to schedule an appointment for a repair or new filling procedure. 

Fourthly, keep the area clean by using a saltwater rinse at least twice a day to ensure nothing gets lodged in the tooth cavity where the filling fell out. Also, try to avoid chewing on the affected side of your mouth.

Why do we need fillings anyway?

When you need a filling, it is usually to fill in a hole in your tooth. This hole is known as a cavity generally caused by tooth decay.  A filling is known as a restorative procedure for the decayed part of your tooth. If that cavity were not filled, the decay would likely continue, and the tooth could be lost. So, fillings are a good thing! 

What are fillings made from?

Tooth fillings can be tooth coloured, silver or gold. 

Tooth coloured fillings are a resin made from a mixture of ceramic and plastic. As the resin can be made to mimic the colour of natural teeth these fillings blend right in. 

Unlike silver or gold fillings this type of filling only lasts five to seven years.

A silver filling is a mixture of mercury, silver, and other metals such as tin and copper. Mercury makes up about 50% of the mixture and it is this ingredient that binds the other metals together and makes the filling strong and durable. 

This type of filling has been used since 1895 and nowadays will last ten to fifteen years.

A gold filling is known as a cast gold filling as it is made based on a model or a cast of your tooth. Cast gold fillings are made with a mixture of gold and other metals like silver and copper. These other metals are required to make the gold cast filling more durable.

At least two visits need to be made to your dentist to get a cast gold filling. At the first appointment the decay on the affected tooth is cleaned out and the dentist makes a mould of the tooth. The hole or cavity is filled with a temporary filling and the mould is sent to a dental lab where the cast gold filling is made.

At the dental lab, the mould of your tooth is used to make a model. A filling that is the same size and shape as your tooth is built, based on the model.

At the second dental visit, the cast gold filling is cemented in place by the dentist.

This type of filling lasts longer than both silver and tooth coloured fillings but they are the most expensive of the three.

Why did my filling fall out?

There are several reasons why a filling or part of a filling can fall out. And most reasons don’t indicate anything serious. 

For example, all fillings have a lifespan. It could simply be that your filling has reached its “best before date.” 

Energetic flossing can sometimes loosen or dislodge a filling as can biting down hard or grinding the teeth.

Plaque building around the edges of a filling can also force the filling to fall out. 


Get in touch!

If you lost a filling or have any questions, please feel free to get in touch today!




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