Bad taste and irritable gums 3 weeks after filling



Sep 25, 2019
Ok so i had a filling 3 weeks ago.

I got paranoid about it for unrelated reasons, and i touched my mouth a bunch inside after it (without cleaning my hands after being on the train). This wasn't smart, and i have no idea if that may have caused some infection in my mouth.

The evening after having this filling i had a bad taste in my mouth.

In the following weeks i went three times to the dentist to have my filling and gums checked. Both because of the taste and because i had, what the dentist said was an ulcer, on my gums.

While not finding anything wrong with the filling after checking multiple times, the dentist told me to rinse with warm water and salt for the ulcer.

The swelling went away, and the taste is not as costant as i had it in the first couple of days. But my teeth lately seems to get irritated very easily and can still feel some pain when flossing (if the floss touches the gum) near the filled tooth. Also other part of the gums got irritated for a while, including parts very far away from the filling. They got irritated, felt a bit swollen, and then returned to normal in a couple of days.

I don't have any excessive bleeding in my gums (they bled a couple of days ago when brushing, but just that once), but it feels like they're getting irritated way more than usual. Also sometimes the taste pops back in my mouth.

Also, i had a full dentist cleaning about a month ago.

The dentist did an xray on the side where i got the filling, and told me there's no infection or abscess "inside" the gums.

Should i schedule another visit with my dentist? I'm afraid that my gums may be in some way infected and i might need antibiotics, seems it's been three weeks and they still get irritated and weird? The problem is that my dentist told me, after three check ups on the filling, that given that she's sure that the filling is fine, next time i would have to pay the visit, and currently paying for that visit, even if it's just 25£, would be pretty harsh on my finances.

To recap:

Relevant things:
* Filling three weeks ago
* Also touched my mouth with unwashed train hands three weeks ago
* Got my teeth dentist-washed about a month ago, so there's basically no plaque to wash right now.

* Bad taste in mouth
* I had the flu with a bit of fever and lots of coughing, might be completely unrelated tho
* Had a big swelling but it's mostly gone
* Gums feel way more irritable than usual, with small swellings and pain that seem to come and go
* no bleeding/very little bleeding

Is it worth spending the money for another dentist appointment? Or does this sound like nothing big and it will maybe just go away eventually?


Well-known member
May 15, 2013
I am not a dentist...

It is always worth getting a hearth are professional check you out when you don’t feel right, but sometimes they do not have any answers either and finances are tight we understand. If it persists and it’s been a while since going for sure get help. Fillings don’t have a taste only a brief adhesive smell when they are placed.

The moth is full of saliva, so it is unlikely to cause an infection just to Touching unless you have unhealthy gums. You are far more likely to get something like that flu you spoke about. Where was this swelling? That fever and swelling are more concerning. I have had minor gum ulcers for no reason whatsoever that I know of and have no know diseases or causes.

I had a couple fillings replaced in a couple visits and had none of the symptoms you mentioned. I simply felt great with less sensitivity afterwords. Nothing beats air and water-tight bonds except healthy natural teeth without fillings.

Regardless, let’s talk oral hygiene for a minute. Here is what works for me.

Here is what I do for gum health especially if they are irritated. First I floss between all the teeth, but scrape the sides, so if you are flossing between tooth 14 and 15 for example you need to go in a minimum of twice. Once you apply pressure distal scraping #15 hugging that tooth then go in between the exact same two teeth and apply pressure mesially scraping #14 hugging that tooth. If it is rough the filling could potentially be smoothed out later. That said there should be a bit of a click if the contact points are made nice. Glide floss is slippery and easier to use, but plain floss is a bit more textured And cleans better. Flossing is much more than knocking food out! If your dental work is of high quality you should be able to use normal floss. If it is rough, consider a different dentist in the future.

Regardless, next I use a soft toothbrush or electric, using mouthwash with an active ingredient such as cetylpridinum chloride or Chlor hexidene (anything that kills bacteria that causes plaque, gingivitis, periodontal disease etc.) I brush along all gums where the meet my teeth. I even use the edge of the brush... If I had a gum ulcer I would brush it where it hurts like gently washing a wound but NOT mutilating it... I wouldn’t want to make It worse or bleed a bunch. Want to clean out bacteria Not make it more prone to infection. I also turn the brush on its side and try to pick between my teeth and gums with the bristles. Next I brush like normal with fluoride toothpaste a minimum of 10 strokes on all bucal, lingual, and occlusal surfaces. In your case I would use something like Colgate Total toothpaste whitch has Triclosan (an added anti-microbial). For sensitive teeth, I would use something like Sensodyne with potassium nitrate Or that new Staneous fluoride sensodyne. I use Colgate prevident (prescription with lots of fluoride sometimes).

Regardless, you don’t need to brush hard or abrade the teeth, so don’t smash the bristles. Next it Is best to spit the toothpaste but not rinse, but don’t swallow it because fluoride will upset your stomach, so spit well. If you must rinse because it drives you crazy, follow with a fluoride rinse which taste like a mothwash. Do NOT eat or drink for 30 minutes. If it’s night time not until morning with the exception water is okay after 30 minutes.

I brush after I eat instead of leaving breakfast on my teeth all day, but I wait a half hour after eating because coffee, tea, orange juice, soda etc. soften enamel. I do at least a basic brush three times daily. With your taste issue and gums if it was me I would bring a travel toothbrush and something like a Colgate Total with me to work or school.

Hope you feel better. Usually changes like this take two weeks to fully help. Your teeth should be shiny and look almost polished and smooth as glass. With a plastic pick you shouldn’t be able to get any plaque off anywhere.

If you aren’t symptom free real quick you should get checked out. Your symptoms are not normal in that a filling doesn’t cause bad tastes, so something needs to be troubleshooted.
Niall Neeson

Niall Neeson

Well-known member
Verified dentist
Apr 18, 2019
Hi Elaine,

I completely understand your concern and any change in behaviour in the mouth is right to alert you to the possibility of an issue.

Obviously I haven’t seen inside your mouth but if the dentist has checked the filling and gum three times then I’d be pretty confident that everything is fine there.

You mentioned that a number of areas of the gums were affected. It is very common that the gums can become inflamed and feel irritated if your general immune system has taken a hit. This is where the flu symptoms may be relevant and may have indirectly contributed to the gums feeling more inflamed- just as when we feel run down we can be more prone to different things like ulcers or cold sores.

You are correct to continue with the cleaning between the teeth as this is the way that you can take control of helping with the health and condition of the gums. They may be a bit tender at the beginning (or bleed in some cases) and that’s ok. Keep the cleaning between the teeth up, once a day should be fine.

Using simple rinses with warm water and salt during the day wouldn’t do any harm and may help speed up the healing process.

As you’ve been in regularly recently I don’t think there’s a rush to go back for a further appointment. I’d give things a bit more time to settle.

Hope this helps,