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Can I Use Mouthwash After a Filling?

Sep 01, 2022

What Is a Filling?

It is a dental restoration that repairs damaged tooth enamel, sealing a tooth to prevent the re-entry of bacteria. Dental fillings are incredible for salvaging diseased teeth to prevent tooth loss. They are incredible for treating various dental problems, including the following:

  1. Broken, chipped, or cracked teeth
  2. Dental cavities
  3. Toothaches

The type of tooth filling you get is crucial to the experience you will have. White or composite fillings are now popular selections for restoring teeth. The reason is that they are tooth-colored, looking like natural teeth. Besides, they are inexpensive choices compared to their counterparts, gold or porcelain fillings.

How Are Dental Fillings Installed?

Installing a dental filling is not as complex as you would imagine. First, a dentist numbs your mouth, ensuring your experience a pain-free procedure. Sometimes sedation dentistry may be necessary, especially for an extensive tooth cavity. Afterward, the dentist will drill out the damaged portion of your tooth. The goal is to remove as much of your tooth structure as is damaged by the infection. (S)he will repeatedly use a cavity detector to determine the depth of the damage on your tooth.

After preparation, your tooth is ready for a filling. The dentist will give you options of available materials for filling your teeth. Installation involves painting the filling material on your tooth and curing it to harden. The dentist will also trim and polish the filling accordingly to ensure an even chewing surface.

How Long Does It Take for Fillings to Harden?

Ideally, it should not be long before your tooth filling hardens and adheres to your natural tooth. Dentists near you will often use lasers to speed up the curing process, particularly for composite fillings. Composite fillings take at least 2 hours to harden. However, metal-based fillings like amalgams require about 24 hours to settle well.

How Long After a Filling Can You Brush Your Teeth?

Brushing your teeth is crucial whether or not you get tooth filling. It is the best way to disallow plaque and tartar from forming on teeth’ surfaces. However, you may feel hesitant regarding teeth brushing soon after dental treatment. After getting a filling, you should only wait 24 hours before considering teeth brushing. The period is necessary to ensure the filling material settles and bonds perfectly with your tooth structure before brushing. However, if you are careful with the process, you can still brush your teeth even before the 24 hours are over.

Be slow and gentle when brushing your teeth. Too much force and abrasion can erode your teeth’ enamel, besides the dental fillings. Further, liaise with your dentist for the best products to use for teeth brushing, including the degree of hardness of your toothbrush’s bristles.

What Should You Expect After a Tooth Filling Procedure?

True success for any dental treatment relies on post-treatment dental care measures. At Montebello Dental Clinic, we always recommend a few tips and guidelines to our patients, preparing them for what to anticipate after treatment. Some things you will experience post tooth fillings are:

  1. Numbing – it will not wear off immediately after you leave the dental office. It should take a few hours before you can feel your entire mouth again.
  2. Tender gums around the filled tooth
  3. Slight sensitivity on the treated and the adjacent teeth – the sensitivity will be to air to cold temperatures or heat. It should get better after a day or two.
  4. Uneven bite – you may feel like you have an uneven bite on the side of the treated tooth. It is a response to having a foreign material in your tooth. However, your bite is perfectly fine and needs a little adjusting to the new state.

Is Mouthwash a Good Idea Immediately After Your Tooth Is Filled?

Mouthwashes are incredible for keeping your mouth fresh and ridding it of bacteria. However, after a tooth filling, it may not be a good idea to use mouthwash. It is particularly crucial for patients with composite fillings. The residual color from the liquid can stain your composites. Besides, some mouth rinses contain alcohol that can enhance the wearing down of your teeth.

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