Getting a cavity filled in never high on anyone’s to-do list! But sometimes it’s necessary in order to protect and care for your teeth. And sometimes an anesthetic is required to make the experience comfortable and pain-free.
Typically, an anesthetic is injected into the spot where the cavity will be filled and this results in a localized numbing effect. In some cases, we may use different procedures, but the end result is the same – to make the experience comfortable for you.
If you’ve ever had a cavity filled you know that an injected anesthetic can be an odd sensation. It may feel as if your lip isn’t really there, or that it’s puffed up to cartoon-size. That’s perfectly normal! Your mouth and lips are fine – and you’re safe from discomfort and pain.
Most people, however, aren’t comfortable eating after a filling because when you can’t quite feel your lips it’s tough to sense where they are when you chew – and that can result in biting your lip in a way that will be more painful later once the anesthetic wears off.
For that reason, we generally advise you to wait until the anesthetic wears off before eating. It makes eating more pleasant and will protect you from inadvertently munching on your own lip.
If you ever feel nervous about the procedures or anesthetic being used, be sure to talk with your dentist. Together, you can discuss options and ways to make the experience more comfortable for you. In the end, a positive experience means you’re more likely to return for ongoing care and that’s important for a healthy mouth and smile.