What some people don’t realize is that there is a life-expectancy to dental fillings. Whether it is an amalgam (silver) filling or a composite resin (white) filling, they are susceptible to new decay. It is important to maintain regular dental visits so that your dentist can monitor existing treatment and make any necessary repairs. There are different factors that can cause an old filling to need replacement:

  • The Filling Has Been Damaged – Whether it is caused from everyday wear and tear over time or an accidental injury, when a tooth becomes compromised it becomes susceptible to bacteria. Harmful bacteria in the mouth that is not removed regularly can cause cavities to form, even under existing fillings. A damaged filling needs immediate attention from your dentist. Many people aren’t aware a filling is impaired, which is why regular checkups are so important!
  • The Filling Is Too Large – If your cavity was very large and there wasn’t enough tooth structure to properly support a filling, it may be faulty and allow for decay to begin forming again underneath. In such cases, a dental crown is typically a better form of treatment.
  • Your Fillings Are Dated – Many of us start getting fillings early on in life, because children aren’t always the most diligent at brushing and flossing! So naturally, with time, our fillings are going to wear out. Keep in mind that activities, or habits, such as chewing ice, eating hard sticky foods, or grinding your teeth can damage aged fillings. Additionally for some patients, the initial seal was not created properly, which can shorten the lifespan of the filling causing the need for early replacement.

Maintain Regular Dental Visits

Let’s face it, nothing lasts forever. At C R Dental Group, located in Dallas, Texas, Dr. James Reisman and Dr. Jordana Contrucci stress the value of staying on top of your oral health. Ideally, we want to keep our teeth a lifetime. The best way to do that is by having good oral hygiene habits at home and regular dental visits. The best way to determine the health of your dental fillings is to have a thorough examination from your dentist. With routine evaluations, you can stay on top of what could otherwise turn out to be a more costly outcome.