Several months ago I had a filling placed. It was fine at the time, but then a few weeks later the tooth became sensitive to cold. Do I need to replace the filling?
Anthony S.-Bache, OK
When a tooth feels fine immediately after a new filling is placed, but then becomes sensitive later, that usually means that there are bacteria from the original decay that had penetrated into the pulp of the tooth. Generally, you wait it out and hope your normal body defenses kick in and deal with it.
The key as to whether you need to do anything will depend on if the sensitivity is getting better or not. If the sensitivity is improving, then you probably don’t need to do anything. If, however, the sensitivity is getting worse, then it is possible you will need to get a root canal treatment. If so, you’ll also need a dental crown.
This blog is brought to you by Gilbert dentist Dr. Brandon Schmidt.
I have a lot of root exposure which has caused quite a bit of sensitivity. None of the sensitive teeth toothpastes are giving any help. Are there any other options?
Allysa W.- Birmingham, AL
Tooth sensitivity is very difficult to deal with. I can list three options for you, but recommend you talk with your dentist about which will be best for you to try.
- Prescription fluoride rinse: There are two types of fluoride rinses, a sodium based and a stannous based. More patients have expressed getting relief from the stannous based, so I would recommend trying that one first. If after 5-6 weeks you don’t see any improvement you can try something else.
- Fluoride varnish: This is applied to your root surfaces after your routine dental cleanings. Many patients find relief that lasts several months. It will have to be reapplied at each cleaning.
- White composite fillings: These can be placed over your exposed root surfaces. You will get immediate relief, but it is considered a last resort option.
You may also be interested in reading about Mercury-free dental services.
This blog is brought to you by Gilbert Dentist Dr. Matt Roper.