At your work Halloween party, you cannot help but indulge in some sweet treats. You could have chocolate and other goodies, but you decide to try a co-worker’s homemade caramel popcorn. As you take a few sticky, chewy bites, you hit a hard kernel and realize your filling has come out!
To help you know what you should do in this situation, keep reading and follow these important steps for handling a lost filling so that you can get your smile back to full strength and function.
Call Your Dentist
Regardless of the kind of dental emergency, your first move should almost always be calling your dentist’s office. Not only can they schedule you for an appointment right away, but they can also give you more specific advice for handling the situation until you arrive.
Clean the Filling and Your Mouth
Before putting anything in your mouth, you must make sure that the object as well as your teeth are clean. Unfortunately, if your filling has come out, it could have come into contact with foreign bacteria that could harm your oral and even your overall health. Depending on the circumstances, you may not have access to certain sanitary amenities, but at minimum, you should rinse your mouth as well as the restoration with clean water.
Put the Filling Back Over the Tooth
While your filling is not on your tooth, the inner layers becomes exposed to oral bacteria and infection. As a result, it is important to cover and protect the tooth. Once you have cleaned or at least rinsed off the filling, put a small dab of toothpaste on the filling and place it back on top of your tooth.
Note that this is just a temporary solution, but it will help to hold the filling in position until you make it to your dentist’s office.
Prevent This Emergency from Happening Again
When your dentist has replaced your lost filling, you need to keep it in good shape as much as possible. You can make sure you are not biting down on hard objects, like ice, pencils, or popcorn kernels. Although not every dental emergency can be avoided, many times they can be. If you continue to visit your dentist on a regular basis—at least every six months—they can keep a close eye on the condition of your restorations. As a result, they may be able to identify when fillings are getting too old and worn and replace them before you experience a dental emergency in the future.
Ultimately, when you take the right steps, you can deal with a lost filling quickly and restore your smile as efficiently as possible. But maybe next time, you should go with the chocolate!
About the Practice
For more than 25 years, the dentists at Pioneer Greens Dentistry have been serving patients throughout the Lincoln area with high-quality dental care. Dr. Claire and Chris Haag are happy to help those who suffer from dental emergencies on the same day as their initial phone call. If you have a lost filling or any other urgent dental problem, you can contact Pioneer Greens Dentistry online or by calling us at 402-483-7502.