Getting a filling can sometimes cause tooth pain and sensitivity afterward. At Lansdowne Family Dental, we understand this can be uncomfortable. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of the common causes of tooth pain after fillings and what you can do to relieve it.

Common Causes of Tooth Pain After Filling

There are a few reasons you may experience tooth pain after getting a filling:

  • Inflammation: Getting a filling involves drilling out a decayed tooth structure. This can cause inflammation in the nerve of your tooth, leading to pain.
  • Sensitivity: Fillings are often made of materials like composite resin or amalgam that can cause temperature sensitivity as they settle in the tooth.
  • Occlusion Issues: If the filling is too high, it can interfere with your bite and cause pain when you chew.

How to Relieve Tooth Pain After a Filling?

Here are some tips to help relieve tooth pain after a filling procedure:

  1. Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers: For mild discomfort, over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can be helpful. These medications can reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief from tooth pain.
  2. Fluoride Treatment: Your dentist might recommend a fluoride treatment to address post-operative sensitivity. Fluoride helps strengthen the tooth’s enamel and reduce sensitivity.
  3. Adjustment of the Filling: If you suspect that a high filling is causing the pain, consult your dentist for an adjustment. Reshaping the filling to align with your bite can alleviate the pressure and discomfort.
  4. Root Canal Therapy: In cases where the pulp is inflamed or infection has occurred, a root canal might be necessary. This procedure involves removing the infected pulp and sealing the tooth to prevent further issues.
  5. Filling Replacement: For a cracked filling, the best course of action might be to replace it. This prevents bacteria from infiltrating the tooth and causing additional pain.

Prevention Is Key

Preventing tooth pain after a filling starts with maintaining good oral hygiene. Brush and floss regularly to prevent cavities that may lead to fillings. Additionally, wearing a night guard if you grind your teeth can prevent cracked fillings. Communication with your dentist about any concerns or issues you experience post-filling is also crucial for swift intervention.

When to Seek Emergency Dental Care for Post-Filling Pain?

Seeking prompt emergency care is important if you experience:

  • Severe throbbing pain
  • Pain radiating to your ear, jaw, or neck
  • Pain when biting down that lasts more than 2 days
  • Swelling in your face
  • A piece of the filling fell out

Severe pain signals irreversible pulpitis – inflammation or infection in the tooth nerve. That requires a root canal or tooth extraction for relief. Facial swelling could mean a dental abscess, which also needs immediate treatment with antibiotics and drainage.

Contact us, if you have severe symptoms after a filling. We have weekend and after-hours appointments available when necessary to resolve issues quickly.


Tooth pain after a filling can be unsettling, but it’s often a temporary issue with manageable solutions. From understanding the potential causes to exploring remedies and prevention strategies, you are now equipped with valuable information to navigate and alleviate post-filling discomfort. Remember that open communication with your dentist is vital, ensuring that any persistent or severe pain is promptly addressed for your oral health and peace of mind.

For residents of Ashburn, Leesburg, and Lansdowne, VA, choose Lansdowne Family Dental for quality dental care. We offer various dental services with a patient-centric approach. Start your dental journey with us. Contact us!

FAQs About Tooth Pain After Filling

Q1: Is it normal to experience some sensitivity after a dental filling?

A1: Yes, experiencing sensitivity is quite common after a dental filling. It usually subsides within a few weeks as the tooth adjusts to the new filling.

Q2: How can I distinguish between normal post-filling sensitivity and a problem that requires attention?

A2: Normal sensitivity often occurs in response to temperature changes and fades relatively quickly. If the pain is severe, lingers, or worsens over time, it’s important to consult your dentist.

Q3: Can I resume eating and drinking as usual after a filling, or should I avoid certain things?

A3: While you can resume your regular eating habits, it’s advisable to avoid extremely hot or cold foods and beverages, as well as very hard or sticky foods, until any sensitivity diminishes.