Can You Eat After Getting a Cavity Filled? Everything You Need to Know

There are very few people who relish the prospect of visiting the dentist, especially if it is to have a dental procedure such as a filling carried out. Despite the fear associated with a trip to the dentist however, if you are in need of a filling, once the cavity has been filled you will be so glad you visited.

Cavities are basically decayed regions of the teeth which rot and decay the teeth more and more until eventually they form small holes or openings. Once a cavity has formed, it won’t heal itself and will continue to get bigger. The only solution is to book in with your dentist and arrange for the cavity to be filled.

If you’re due to have a filling, it’s important to understand what your options are, what the procedure entails, and what to expect afterwards. One of the most common questions that people ask regarding a cavity being filled is can you eat after getting your cavities filled? Well, that’s what we’re going to find out now.

What are the different types of dental filling?

Before we can answer the question of can you eat after getting your cavities filled, we first need to look at some of the different options you have in terms of dental filling. Decades ago, if you wanted fillings, you had virtually no options at all, whereas now things are very different.

Here are some of the different types of dental filling for you to choose from.

Amalgam fillings

Amalgam fillings, better known as ‘silver fillings’ are widely used to fill cavities in the dental world, and for good reason.

Made from silver, these fillings are very durable and can last upwards of 15 years before they need to be replaced. They’re also more affordable than composite fillings and are strong and so can withstand the force generated by chewing.

Composite fillings

Up next we have composite fillings.

Composite fillings are considered by many to be the most aesthetic fillings on the market today. Made from materials which are designed to match the colour of the teeth, composites blend in perfectly and are much more aesthetically pleasing than amalgams.

Composite fillings are versatile as they can also be used to repair the teeth. The only real downside is the fact that they’re not as strong as silver fillings and they don’t last quite as long.

How long should you wait to eat after having cavities filled?

If you are due to have cavities filled, no doubt you’ll be asking can you eat after getting your cavities filled, and if so, how soon after having them filled should you wait to eat?

The truth of the matter is that it is the type of cavity filling that you have that will affect the amount of time you should wait to eat.

Amalgam fillings such as silver for example, typically require you to wait around 24 hours before the filling can fully harden. It is therefore recommended that you go as long as possible without food, and if you must eat, choose the right foods (more on that later) and chew on the opposite side of your mouth.

If you have composite fillings, you can eat around 2 hours after the filling. This is because, once the dentist introduces the composite to UV light, it will harden almost instantly.

What to eat after a dental filling?

If you have just had a filling and aren’t sure what you can eat, you should eat foods which are soft, rather than hard and/or chewy. Foods such as mashed potatoes, soft cheese, and soft pasta are great, as is soup or smoothies as there is no chewing involved.

Foods to avoid after a dental filling

If you have just had a cavity filled, the last thing you want is to damage it, or your tooth, by eating the wrong food, which is what we’re covering here.

While we can’t list every food you need to avoid, generally you should stay clear of hard, chewy, or crunchy foods for at least 24 hours, even if you have had composite fillings. Food such as potato chips, peanuts, granola, cereal, and frozen foods are all potentially dental disasters waiting to happen, so it is best to stay clear for a while.

Final thoughts

So, can you eat after getting your cavities filled? Yes, you can, you just need to know how long to wait, which foods to enjoy, and which foods to avoid.

Hopefully the info contained above has proved useful, and if so, be sure to check back here for many handy tips and advice in the near future.

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