If it doesn’t hurt, don’t fix it … right? Wrong! Even if you aren’t experiencing any pains or problems, your fillings and crowns will eventually need to be replaced. When you consider the amount of work your teeth do every day, it’s not surprising that fillings will eventually wear out and sometimes need to be replaced. Just like natural teeth, your restorations need regular care to prevent dental problems that can lead to expensive treatments or tooth loss.
There are many factors that can affect the life span of your fillings. The average silver filling, crown or bridge can last from ten to twenty years. Plastic tooth-coloured fillings may only last half as long before they need repair or replacement.
Outdated fillings may start to leak around the edges from regular wear and tear. This could allow harmful bacteria to get into the tooth or crown where it can cause decay. This type of decay often goes undetected until it has reached the nerve of the tooth.
Cracks can also be a problem. The average human bites with several hundred pounds of pressure per square inch. That can make tiny cracks in the restored tooth. If cracks aren’t repaired in time, they can lead to fractures that may extend below the gumline or into the nerve. That might mean you’ll need a new crown. We may recommend a crown before this happens to prevent unnecessary damage.
Unchecked, many of these dental dangers can open the door to gum disease or loss of your teeth. If you have any questions about your fillings, please feel free to contact our office. It’s important you understand what to expect from your fillings and crowns and what kind of care they need.