A member asked:
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what can i do to keep from having to get a new filling in the same tooth every year? for the most part i have good dental hygiene, and rarely get cavities. but i do have one molar on the lower right side of my mouth that seems to have a new or expanded ca

4 doctor answers
Dr. Theodore Davantzis
39 years experience Dentistry
Without : Without an exam and a radiograph, it is tough to tell how large that restoration is. Molars take the brunt of your biting force, and it may very well be that the tooth needs a stronger restoration to help protect it and absorb those biting forces. It is possible that the tooth would benefit from an onlay or a full coverage crown. Yes, those restorations will be more expensive than the filling, but will also last much longer. It could also be that you have a "plunger cusp" in the opposite arch that exerts excessive force on one small area of that restoration, causing it to crack often. Smoothing that point down goes a long way in minimizing the trauma on that filling.
Answered on Dec 30, 2018
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1 comment
Dr. David Schleimer
A Verified Doctor commented
A US doctor answered Learn more
Yes, but one crown surely is less cost than yearly restorative replacement, which by it's very nature removes more structural support each time (if done correctly)
Apr 19, 2013
Dr. Mitchel Blumenthal
38 years experience Dentistry
There : There is an issue with a restoration if it has to be replaced every year. I would recommend a crown. Once cemented it is done, the tooth is sealed and it is the strongest restoration for a tooth when a filling is not "working".
Answered on Oct 3, 2016
Dr. Robert Stirm
35 years experience Dentistry
A : A restoration that requires replacement every year is unusual. There is probably something that is not being accounted for that is causing early failure of the restoration. Some conditions that might lead to early failure are: 1. Shrinkage of the filling material allowing decay causing bacteria to get between the filling and the tooth with resultant decay. 2. The filling is simply too large for the tooth and the tooth structure is weakened allowing flexing of the tooth and then breaking of the bond between the tooth and the filling leading to decay. 3. An unseen crack in the tooth which allows flexing of the tooth and again leading to decay. 4. Mechanical stresses on the tooth, such as the plunging cusp mentioned in another answer, that are greater than the filling material and tooth can withstand leading to failure. 5. Simple inability to adequately clean between the teeth leading to decay. This may be an indication for orthodontic treatment to relieve the crowding or malalignment of the teeth. Crowding and malalignment of the teeth can make it almost impossible in some cases to adequately clean some teeth. Or, it may be that a filling is the wrong choice for restoring the tooth and a restoration that strengthens the tooth, such as an onlay or crown, will be required. So, ... Ask your dentist why the restoration is failing. Is it because the filling is too big, the tooth is too weak, the opposing teeth are putting too much pressure on the restoration, is there a crack in the tooth or is there a malalignment or crowding issue preventing adequate cleaning of the tooth. The answer given will dictate the best restorative solution to the failing restoration or at least be a start to the solution if orthodontics is required.
Answered on Oct 3, 2016
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Dr. David Schleimer
A Verified Doctor commented
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Excellent synopsis of how one would differentially diagnose such a situation. Well done!
Apr 19, 2013
Dr. Neil McLeod
48 years experience Prosthodontics
When : When we elect to help a patient out by filling a tooth, we choose a material which in our clinical opinion is going to last for a reasonable amount of time, at least five years. So all things being equal, i would be surprised if a tooth broke again in such a short time. Why don't you ask your dentist to fix the tooth properly. He is going to need to take an x-ray and make sure he understands the problem. This might involve a slightly more extensive restoration like a gold or porcelain onlay or crown. Best wishes dr. Neil mcleod dds dentistry that lasts - quality that counts.
Answered on Oct 4, 2016

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