Fillings aren’t necessarily something that anyone looks forward to, but the treatment certainly isn’t meant to be a punishment. Fillings are sometimes necessary in order to prevent additional oral health problems in the future, like tooth loss. If you’ve been told that you are needing some additional fillings, you should strongly consider having this done before the year comes to an end. This way, you can prevent additional issues and fully maximize your dental insurance benefits. Read on to learn how this works.
What Will Happen If You Put Off Your Fillings Too Long?
When decay has damaged a tooth, this isn’t reversible because tooth enamel does not grow back. When left untreated, you could be looking at numerous different problems as it becomes worse. This will continue to destroy healthy parts of the tooth until you reach a point where a filling isn’t enough. You would likely end up needing one of the following, more costly and invasive, treatments to restore your smile to health:
- Root Canal Therapy: When decay reaches the pulp inside the tooth, the bacteria will irritate and eventually infect it. You could even end up with a painful abscess. To save your tooth, root canal therapy will likely be necessary. This includes removing the infected pulp, cleaning the inside of the tooth, filling it, and sealing it off. A crown is often times placed over the tooth to protect it.
- Extraction: If a cavity is left untreated for too long, it could become so severe that even a skilled dentist is unable to save your tooth with a root canal. At this point, you would need to have it extracted to prevent the spread of infection throughout your mouth.
How Do Your Dental Benefits Play a Role?
If you have dental insurance, you are likely to lose out on all of your unused benefits by the end of the calendar year. Your annual deductible is the money that you are responsible for paying out of pocket each year until you’re able to take advantage of your benefits. Each January, this amount will reset, and you are left responsible for paying it once again. If you have already paid your deductible for the year, you can save money by having your filling now instead of after the holiday season.
It’s best not to wait when it comes to dental fillings. This way, you can keep yourself from developing more serious dental issues and save your wallet in the process!
About the Author
Dr. Danny Tran earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery from the University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry where he graduated with high honors. Currently, he is a proud member of the American Dental Association, the California Dental Association, and the San Gabriel Valley Dental Society, where he serves on the board. His practice will work on your behalf with your insurance company whether you are in-network or out-of-network. For more information on dental fillings or to schedule an appointment at his office in Covina, visit his website or call (626) 331-0688.