Keeping in touch by blog!

Thank you for spending a few minutes and checking out my blog!

This is a great way for me to keep you informed about what's new at Oakdale Dental.  You'll find stories about todays dentistry and how it can make your life better and healthier, and sometimes some random thoughts I hope you find interesting. 

If you are already one of my patients, let me know what you think.  Any topics you would like to read about or questions you have, just send me an email.There is lots of information already on this site and my other practice website: Oakdale Dental! 

For those of you who I have not had the pleasure to meet yet, I'm glad to have here and feel free to drop by and pay us a visit at Oakdale Dental in beautiful Oakville.

So, come back once in a while...I try to post regularly and have some interesting things for you to check out and maybe a story or two to tell.


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"Great things start with a smile!" Dr Rosenblat

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Wednesday
Oct122011

Should my tooth be sensitive after a filling?

After having a new "filling" the tooth shouldn't be sensitive or uncomfortable.  But there are reasons it might be.  So lets review some reasons why a tooth may be sensitive after a new filling is placed.

First off, I am going to discuss "white" fillings.  These are made of a composite resin, which is a high strength type of plastic.  These fillings need to be bonded to the tooth structure they touch or else oral bacteria and saliva will seep in between the filling and tooth.  Old metal fillings did not need to be bonded because we depended on corrosion to seal the "gap" between tooth and filling (really, that's true!).  But because it takes some time for the metal to start to corrode, we had to put a foul smelling varnish layer on the tooth before we placed the metal filling in to temporarily seal the tooth.

Now how we accomplish the bond of the white filling to tooth has evolved greatly in the past almost 30 years I've been placing them.  Originally the way we bonded the teeth often irritated the nerve in the tooth quite a bit ( because of what we used and how difficult it was to do correctly)  and caused sensitivity that often went away.   But today it's much easier to accomplish but we still have to be very careful to do it correctly.  So the bond to tooth or should I say the failure to bond correctly to the tooth is one of the main reasons for tooth sensitivity after a filling is placed.

But there are other reasons too.  You may have noticed that dentists adjust the filling so it fits in the bite correctly.  Composite fillings are rock hard when we are done placing them.  The old metal fillings were soft for an hour so they could kind of self adjust ( and break too) until they set.  If the filling is to "high", biting on that tooth pushes the tooth into the jawbone and can cause inflamation at the end of the root causing sensitivity.  I hear patients often say if the filling is too high, they will wait for it to wear down.  It won't.  What happens is the tooth will move slightly into the correct bite and settle down.  If it doesn't move, it hurts.  So don't wait, get it adjusted pronto!

Another thing composite resin fillings do when they set ( with that bright light we shine on it) is shrink.  The newer fillings are getting better and shrink less these days.  If too much composite is placed and then set with that light, is it shrinks and pulls the tooth. And we can sometimes see the cracks in the tooth as a result of the filling shrinking. 

Doing any kind of restorative work on a tooth does stress the nerve of the tooth.  I may get everything right, but the healing potential of the nerve may be quite poor and the stress of treatment may be all that was needed to cause the nerve to  become inflammed and die.  I've seen teeth with tiny fillings die and others with exposed nerves that I thought would die, be fine for years and years.