How can I temporarily fill a cavity at home?

This blog post will address the topic, “how can I temporarily fill a cavity at home?” and cover topics like do temporary home filled cavities work, what is a dental filling, how is dental filling done at your dentist’s office, what are the different types of filling materials, can dental cavities heal naturally at home and natural ways to heal a cavity at home.

How Can I Temporarily Fill A Cavity At Home?

To temporarily fill a cavity at home all by yourself, you need a temporary filling material, a cotton ball, a piece of soft tissue or cloth and a mirror to see the cavity you want to temporarily fill.

Step 1: Dry the tooth surface using a cotton ball.

Step 2: Place a soft tissue or small piece of cotton cloth against the lingual side of the tooth.

Step 3: Place the temporary filling on the dried tooth surface over the cavity.

Step 4: Using the cotton ball shape the filling and make sure to cover the entire cavity without any gap.

Step 5: Remove excess of temporary filling material.

Step 6: Remove the soft tissue or piece of cloth and close your mouth to check if the bite is even.

It is recommended not to eat from the side of the filling for an hour or two. You must also avoid eating anything hard from the filling side as it may rip off the filling material.

Do Temporary Home Filled Cavities Work?

No, temporarily filled cavities at home don’t work as it may only seal the cavity or the hole but can’t remove the decay. 

As a result, the decay process may continue beneath the seal and worsen over time resulting in pulp tissue infection, leading to excruciating pain, sensitivity and discomfort.

It is therefore advised to consult your dentist as soon as you notice a hole or feel a hole through your tongue.

You must remember that sealing the hole is not the only purpose of a filling and to remove the decayed part from the tooth surface is of prime importance , which can only be done in your dentist’s office.

What Is A Dental Filling?

Dental filling, as the name suggests, is the use of various materials to fill the hole in the teeth called cavities

Materials used to fill the cavities are referred to as Filling Materials and the process is known as Dental Filling.

How Is A Dental Filling Done At Your Dentist’s Office?

  1. A local anesthetic is used in the first step to numb the soft tissues around the tooth that needs filling. This is essential to give painless dental care.
  1. Removal of the decayed area of the tooth that needs filling using rotary instruments, or a laser.
  1. Probing to confirm removal of all decayed parts of the tooth that needs filling.
  1. After complete removal of the decayed part, cavity preparation is done by cleaning the bacteria and other debris produced during decay removal.
  1. Liners are applied for nerve protection if the decay has advanced to the root and might irritate the nerve endings.
  1. If you have opted for a tooth colored composite material for filling, then your dentist will apply the composite in layers and use a special blue light called “curing” to harden the composite material applied.
  1. Finally, trimming and polishing is done and the filling process is complete.

What Are The Different Types Of Filling Materials?

Materials used to fill the cavities are referred to as filling materials and the process is known as dental filling.

Variety of materials are used for filling. Some of them are listed below:

  • Gold fillings 
  • Porcelain 
  • Silver amalgam  
  • Tooth-colored materials called composite resin fillings
  • Glass Ionomer

Several factors that need consideration while choosing the best filling material for yourself are:

  • Where is the decay located?
  • How much decay has involved the tooth?
  • If the roots are involved?
  • Amount you can bear for a filling?
  • Recommendation of the dentist after full examination and X-Ray

After taking all the above points in consideration, you can choose the best filling material for yourself that will have maximum efficacy and minimum discomfort.

Can Dental Cavities Heal Naturally At Home?

Yes, dental cavities may heal naturally at home without going to the dentist, if and only if it is in its earliest stage. 

The dental cavity forms in five stages. First stage is the formation of white spots on the tooth surface and preventive actions like toothbrushing with a fluoride toothpaste, daily flossing and mouthwash can reverse the cavity formation in this stage.

However, if ignored, the cavity development may enter into its later stages where reversal is impossible to achieve and root canal is the only favourable treatment option.

Natural Ways To Heal A Cavity At Home

A cavity can be healed naturally over time at home if you follow the below mentioned tips:

  • Tooth brushing twice daily – Brushing twice a day, once in the morning and once at night before going to bed, for two minutes is essential to prevent plaque build up and thereby prevent tooth decay.
  • Use Fluoride Toothpaste – Fluoride can greatly help achieve oral and dental health by strengthening the tooth enamel, making it more resistant to tooth decay. Fluoride reduces the amount of acid produced by the bacteria on your mouth. 
  • Floss daily – According to a study, flossing is highly effective in reducing the interproximal caries risk. Daily floss can help stimulate your gums and reduce plaque leading to lesser inflammation risk.
  • Occasional use of therapeutic mouthwash containing active ingredients – Therapeutic mouthwashes as the name suggests have therapeutic action and control dental conditions like gingivitis, tooth decay and periodontal diseases. 
  • Oil Pulling – A study concluded oil pulling using coconut oil to be an effective procedure in decreasing plaque formation and plaque induced gingivitis. Similarly other studies have also found oil pulling to be an effective and safe procedure to reduce plaque accumulation and thus heal small cavities naturally.
  • Eat Foods Rich In Calcium, Magnesium And Phosphorus – Calcium and magnesium plays an important role in enamel remineralization and saliva production. Calcium rich foods like cauliflower, nuts, salmon and figs, helps in optimal saliva production that acts as a natural cleanser and prevents plaque accumulation and thus cavity formation.
  • Vitamin D rich diet or vitamin D supplements prevent cavities from forming – According to research, children with vitamin D deficiency had an increased risk of developing enamel defects and tooth fracture. Another clinical trial reported vitamin D to be a prominent agent for caries prevention.
  • Avoid frequent snacking – Frequent snacking in between meals increases the risk of getting cavities, as the simple carbohydrates in these snacks provide a perfect breeding ground for cavity-causing bacteria.
  • Drink Milk – Drinking milk prevents cavities and also heals cavities. According to a study, milk and cheese contain anti-cariogenic components such as calcium, phosphate and casein, which protects the teeth from developing cavities.
  • Avoid brushing teeth just after having acidic foods or drinks – You must wait for 30 minutes to one hour after consumption of acidic foods and drinks. The acid in the food or drink otherwise may erode the enamel layer and regular habit may cause exposed dentin leading to pain and sensitivity and increased risk of developing cavities.
  • Use Gentle And Short Strokes When Brushing – Use gentle, short strokes to brush your front teeth and thoroughly clean your mouth without abrading the enamel and preventing cavities from developing.
  • Consult Your Dentist Twice In A Year – It is important to get your oral health checked twice every year with an interval of 6 months between two visits. 
  • Dental Cleaning Once In 6 Months To Prevent Cavities Formation – Dental cleaning can help in removing the plaque and tartar and thus prevent formation of a cavity or decay or gum disease or periodontal disease of any type.
  • Simply rinse with water each time after you have food – You must also clean your teeth and gums, each time after you have food but not with a toothbrush. Simple rinse with water is considered good for overall oral health and hygiene.
  • Get those pits and grooves sealed to prevent formation of cavities – If you keep getting cavities even if you brush and floss your teeth, there may be several pits and grooves present on the occlusal surface of your teeth. The food particles get stuck in these pits and grooves, not possible to remove from brushing, resulting in plaque buildup, acid attacks on enamel by plaque bacteria and finally cavities formation.


This blog post addressed the topic, “how can I temporarily fill a cavity at home”. We understood if temporarily filled cavities at home work, what is a dental filling, how is dental filling done at your dentist’s office and what are the different types of filling materials. The article outlined if dental cavities heal naturally at home and some natural ways to heal a cavity at home.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs): How Can I Temporarily Fill A Cavity At Home

Can you stop a cavity when it starts?

Yes, a cavity can be stopped in its earliest stage once it starts. Preventive actions like toothbrushing with a fluoride toothpaste, daily flossing and mouthwash can reverse the cavity formation in this stage.

Cavities can also be stopped with the use of a new treatment called silver diamine fluoride (SDF). Silver Diamine Fluoride is a liquid that can be applied to halt the progress of cavities in all age groups.

A 2009 published study recommends 38% SDF in cases where restorative treatment is not an option. However, it may not be helpful in cases of pain and sensitivity due to pulpal infection.

Do Cavities Only Get Worse?

Yes, cavities may get worse if left ignored and untreated. Cavity can be reversed naturally in its earliest stage but once it reaches dentin, there can’t be any reversal and filling is the only treatment. 

However, if the cavity is left untreated and no filling is done, it may worsen and lead to tooth infection which may further spread to the adjoining jaw bone causing osteomyelitis.

Ascending tooth infections may enter the brain through sinuses or blood and lead to abscess formation in the brain.

Do cavities go away after filling?

Yes, cavities go away after filling but they can return if good oral hygiene is not maintained.

In order to prevent cavities from reappearing even after filling, daily brushing your teeth twice is essential along with daily flossing and occasional mouthwash.

How Can I Heal A Cavity In 2 Days At Home?

The only way to heal a cavity in 2 days is to get a filling done at your dentist’s office. It takes almost an hour or less to fill a single cavity. 

In case of multiple cavities, the dentist might give you multiple appointments.

Do Cavities Spread?

No, cavities do not spread but may result from the same cause once again on another tooth.

Cavities do not spread from one tooth to another but may be caused by the same process and under the same conditions if proper treatment and oral hygiene is not maintained.

Other FAQs about Teeth Cavities that you may be interested in.

How can I heal a cavity in 2 days at home?

How bad is a cavity if you can see it?

Does it hurt to get a cavity filled with laughing gas?


Cavities/tooth decay – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic

The Tooth Decay Process: How to Reverse It and Avoid a Cavity. (2018)

What Is a Filling? Colgate

Dental Health and Tooth Fillings. (2019)

11 Ways to Keep Your Teeth Healthy. (2019)

Can You Reverse a Cavity? (2020)

Can You Cure Tooth Decay (Cavities) Naturally?

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