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Having tooth sensitivity after filling is a relatively common occurrence, but this is a very minor side effect that typically goes away within a week or two after your procedure. The degree of sensitivity is incomparable to the discomfort and complications that can occur as a result of tooth decay, and certainly isn’t worth delaying having tooth fillings over. Let’s take a look at tooth sensitivity after a tooth filling and how you can manage it.


The Importance Of Dental Fillings

Tooth fillings are done to treat and manage tooth decay, and to prevent it from worsening. While it is possible to have inactive decay, an untreated tooth cavity tends to get worse over time. It can eventually result in tooth loss, spread to the adjacent teeth, and even go on to cause gum disease that can progress to bone loss over time.

Tooth fillings are a relatively inexpensive and efficient procedure, and a straightforward filling can be completed in as little as 15 minutes.


Types Of Materials Used For Dental Fillings

There are different types of materials that are suitable for tooth fillings including composite resin, gold, porcelain, amalgam and glass ionomer. Composite resin has become quite common as it is very affordable, however gold and porcelain fillings, while they may be more expensive, are longer lasting. 

Despite there being different types of materials for fillings, the procedure is performed in the same way.


Tooth Sensitivity After Filling – What Are The Causes?

If your treated tooth feels sensitive after a filling it could mean that there is a problem with your filling, or a part of your tooth that wasn’t treated.

Dental Patient

Your filling is too high

When you have the filling done, your dentist will use anaesthetic to numb your jaw to ensure a painless experience. This usually means that you are still under anaesthetic when you leave your dentist’s office, and you may not realise at that time, that the filling should be adjusted. 

Composite resin fillings

Sometimes composite resin fillings can shrink after the procedure, leaving an open gap between the filling and your tooth.



It is also possible for the dentist’s drill to cause some damage during the procedure. As your dentist drills, the heat of the drill can cause inflammation of the tooth pulp. This condition is called pulpitis and this sometimes warrants a root canal to save your tooth.


Managing Sensitivity After Dental Fillings

Tooth sensitivity should improve in the days after your procedure but you may need some additional coping mechanisms until that happens, including

  • Over the counter medication
  • Chewing and biting on the other side of your mouth
  • Avoiding hot and cold beverages
  • Using toothpaste formulated for sensitive teeth
  • Persistent or unbearable sensitivity should be reported to your dentist as soon as possible.


There is no reason to suffer in silence. Please contact us if you need help managing tooth sensitivity after filling. Call us for an appointment: (02) 4210 9078.

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