Fillings: Some people feel sensitivity after they receive a filling. The tooth may be sensitive to pressure, air, sweet foods or cold. Composite fillings often cause sensitivity, but other types of filling materials can, too. The most common reason for pain right after the anesthetic wears off is that the filling is too high. If the bite feels even a hair off, let us know and we can polish it to the correct position in a matter of minutes without getting numb. Overtime, even being a hair off, the tooth can become very sensitive to biting pressure, so again please let us know (there is no charge to smooth a high filling)! We want to make sure you are biting on the filling to disperse the biting force and support the rest of the tooth, so occasionally we may err on the side of caution and smoothing is required. Once the numbing wears off, you will know if it is even a hair off.
Usually the cold/sweet sensitivity improves overtime: using sensitive toothpaste and just spitting it out (versus rinsing it away with water) can help some with sensitivity to cold and sweets. Also avoiding acidic and sugary foods can help and is generally good for the mouth!
As stands to reason, the bigger and deeper the filling is, the more likely the sensitivity. Medicine is placed in deep spots to help protect the nerve. Unfortunately, sometimes the tooth dies after dental treatment if it is a deep filling. The medicine is our best effort to prevent tooth death, but if it does occur a root canal is the ideal treatment. Also, if a band was placed to hold the material during filling placement, some gum pain can be expected. Gum pain usually resolves in a matter of days.
Cleanings/Deep Cleanings: Gum pain can be expected. Use warm salt water rinses (about the saltiness of soup). Sensitive tooth paste can help with sensitivity that results from getting rid of the build up on your teeth/roots. The build-up (calculus aka tartar) is harmful to your teeth/roots/bone and gums, but it does provide some insulation so when it is removed some sensitivity occurs. If the sensitivity remains after using the sensitive toothpaste we can apply some desensitizing material. Let us know and we can treatment plan the desensitizing procedure for you.
Crowns: Your gums are often traumatized because we need to get past the build-up material and get to "solid ground" so that the crown hugs the tooth and not hug on a filling material. Hugging the tooth makes the tooth/crown complex less likely to break. OTC pain medication and warm salt water rinses for the gums is recommended to manage pain.
As above, some sensitivity can occur. Sensitive toothpaste is recommended again for that.
Note: Post operative forms for Surgeries are reviewed and given to patients at treatment time.
What to Expect After Dental Treatment