How Long do Fillings Last?

check up of a tooth filling

Maybe you’ve never had a filling, or the last one you got was during your childhood. If you have a cavity or old filling that needs to be replaced, how long can you expect your new restoration to last?

While today’s dental materials are more durable than ever, they only last for so long. It’s quite unlikely that a filling will last for the rest of your life. But with good maintenance, you can expect it to last for several years.

Here are some things to keep in mind:


What Your Filling is Made From

Over time, fillings wear out. The older it is, the more it’s likely to have leaky margins or open areas that allow bacteria into the tooth. Newer composite materials allow for a closer bond with your tooth than traditional metal fillings do. By scheduling regular checkups in our Brighton or Ferntree Gully practice, we can pinpoint leaks before they lead to complex problems.


If You Grind and Clench Your Teeth

Fillings don’t flex or withstand the same amount of pressure that teeth do. If you’re prone to a bruxism or grinding habit, it can cause your fillings to break or fall out of your teeth.


Your Oral Hygiene Habits

New fillings don’t make your tooth resistant to cavities; they only repair areas that have already been eroded by one. You’ll need to brush and floss around your new filling daily to prevent bacteria from seeping around the edges. If you don’t, a new cavity will develop around it and the filling will need to be replaced.


How Old it Is

It’s not uncommon for a dental filling to last anywhere from 7-20 years, depending on the situation. While there’s not an expiration date on fillings, the better care you take of it, the longer it’s likely to last.


Visit Centre for Dentistry in Brighton or Ferntree Gully every six months to keep your smile (and fillings) as healthy as possible.