Are Dental Fillings Painful For Children?

If your child has a cavity and needs a filling, you’re both understandably worried right now. Your little one might be curious about how the procedure will go, while you are concerned about the pain your child can experience.

To put both of your nerves at ease, check out this short guide to learn what to expect and whether a filling is truly painful for children. 

How Fillings Work

Getting a dental filling is one of the most common dental procedures, both for kids and adults. The process usually follows these steps:

  • Tooth inspection: The pediatric dentist takes a look at the tooth to see the size of the cavity and determine the right treatment. In some cases, they may take an X-ray to see the full extent of the decay.
  • Cleaning the tooth: The dentist removes all the decayed tissue and bacteria from the tooth and cleans it.
  • Applying the filling: The dentist uses a special resin to seal the tooth and restore its look and strength.

Do Pediatric Fillings Hurt?

Dental fillings don’t hurt, and neither will the tooth treated for the cavity. Before beginning the treatment, the pediatric dentist in Ashburn will use a local anesthetic to numb the tooth and ensure the child doesn’t feel any discomfort.

If the little one is particularly anxious or has dental anxiety, a mild sedative like laughing gas can also be used to help them feel more at ease.

After getting the filling, the child could complain of some pain, however. This is completely normal, as the tooth may be more sensitive for a few days. The discomfort can be easily managed with over-the-counter pain medication and by chewing on the other side of the mouth.

How Long Does a Filling Last?

This usually depends on the type of filling your child gets. For instance, a composite resin filling can last around seven years with the right care, so technically, your child shouldn’t need another one until their baby tooth falls out.

But this depends on maintenance. If you want to make sure the filling lasts, you can:

  • Make sure your child brushes and flosses their teeth daily.
  • Reduce their snacking, especially sweet, chewy, sticky, and hard foods.
  • Ask them not to chew on objects like toys or pens.
  • Give them fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Give them more tap water instead of fruit juices (which contain sugar).
  • Take them to see their pediatric dentist every six months for a professional cleaning and check-up. 

Does Your Child Need a Filling? We Can Help

If you’ve noticed a cavity on one of your child’s teeth, bring them in to see Dr. Jonathon Konz to get a filling and restore their oral health.

Request a consultation at Little Smiles Pediatric Dentistry online, or call us at (703) 687-1581 if you have more questions about our services.

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