Problems With Dental Fillings (cont.)
Pain Around Fillings
There are several explanations for pain around fillings, each resulting from a different cause.
- Pain when you bite. With this type of pain, the pain occurs when you
bite down. The pain is noticed soon after the anesthesia wears off and
continues over time. In this case, the filling is interfering with your bite.
You will need to return to your dentist and have the filling reshaped.
Pain when your teeth touch. This pain is a very sharp pain that
occurs only when your teeth touch. The pain is likely caused by the touching of
two different metal surfaces (for example, the silver amalgam in a newly filled
tooth and a gold crown on another tooth with which it touches). This pain
should resolve on its own within a short period of time.
"Toothache-type" pain. If the decay was very deep to the
pulp of the tooth, this "toothache" response may indicate this tissue
is no longer healthy. If this is the case, "root canal" treatment will
Referred pain. With this type of pain, you experience pain or
sensitivity in other teeth besides the one that received the filling. With this
particular pain, there is likely nothing wrong with your teeth. The filled
tooth is simply passing along "pain signals" it's receiving to other
teeth. This pain should decrease on its own over 1 to 2 weeks.
Allergic Reactions to Amalgam (Silver) Fillings
Allergic reactions to silver fillings are rare. Fewer than 100 cases have
ever been reported, according to the ADA. In these rare circumstances, mercury
or one of the metals used in an amalgam restoration is thought to trigger the
allergic response. Symptoms of amalgam allergy are similar to those experienced
in a typical skin allergy and include skin rashes and itching. Patients who
suffer amalgam allergies typically have a medical or family history of
allergies to metals. Once an allergy is confirmed, another restorative material
can be used.
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