If you found out you have a cavity during your last dental exam, you may be wondering how long you can wait to have it filled. Your reasons might range from a matter of financing whatever portion your insurance doesn’t cover to fear of having your cavity filled.
What Does Your Dentist Say?
The first step to making a decision about when to get your cavity filled should be what your dentist says. Since the technology that is used to detect cavities earlier is getting better and better, it is possible that you are in the early stages of tooth decay and have a little time to play with.
On the other hand, some dentists wait until a soft spot in the tooth truly needs treatment before mentioning that the cavity needs to be filled. You should discuss this with your dentist and find out what time frame you have to work with on getting the cavity filled.
Although a cavity progresses slowly, you still don’t want to put off dental work to the point that you have to have a costlier and more painful procedure as the cavity can affect the deeper layers of your tooth.
If the reason you wish to wait to have the cavity filled is fear, then there are some steps you can try to overcome that fear.
- Try relaxation techniques and deep breathing.
- Learn the details of the procedure. Knowledge sometimes alleviates fear.
- Figure out exactly what you’re scared of, so you can address it.
- Watch a friend or family member have the procedure so you know what to expect.
- Share your intense fears with your dentist. There are some medications he can prescribe that will relax you before your visit.