Wisdom Teeth: Removal, Maintenance and Cavity Prevention

Guide To Fitting A Temporary Filling

If you lose a filling, you'll need to see your dentist as soon as possible.  However, if an immediate appointment is not available, you can carry out a few emergency repairs yourself.  Here's how to fit a temporary filling to tide you over until you can get to the dental clinic.

You'll need a temporary tooth saver kit, which you can buy from good pharmacies.  Note that this is just a temporary, emergency fix, and you should try to have the filling replaced by your dentist within a few days.

  1. First of all, wash out the cavity left by the missing filling with clean warm water.  This will get rid of any bits of food or other debris that are in the hole left by the missing filling.  
  2. Take a cotton bud and soak it in the liquid provided with the kit.  Apply the liquid to the damaged tooth, being careful not to touch your tongue, cheek or gums.  This liquid is designed to help the filling to set and stick to the enamel of your tooth.  
  3. Next, take a very small quantity of the tooth filling material from the container in the kit.  You can do this by using the spade tool provided or just pinch a piece off with your finger if you find this easier.  Roll the material into a little ball between your thumb and your forefinger.  
  4. Firmly press the ball of filling material into the hole in your tooth so that it slightly overspills, and tamp it down with the special applicator provided in the kit.  
  5. Now bite down on the filling.  In order to get a comfortable bite so that the filling does not sit 'proud', you'll need to gently grind your teeth together.  
  6. Take a cotton bud and immerse it in warm water.  Use the moistened cotton bud to wipe away any excess filling material from around the tooth.  In order to remove any loose particles of filling, rinse your mouth out thoroughly with clean, warm water.  
  7. The moisture in your mouth will activate the setting process of the temporary filling material and it should be firm and secure within a few minutes.  However, the filling will not be totally set hard for a few hours, so don't eat or drink anything until the material has set completely.

In conclusion

If you lose a filling while you're away on holiday or out of dental clinic opening hours, you can carry out a temporary repair by following the above guidelines.  If your dentist operates a weekend or evening dental clinic, take advantage of this and arrange an appointment to have your running repair replaced with a proper filling.