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Does fillings hurt?



Jan 4, 2013
Hi all, I recently went to the dentist for a routine 6 months check up to find out that I have 2 decay teeth that requires a filling. One on my molar and another on my wisdom tooth. I'm really afraid as the last time I had a filling was a long long time ago. Totally forgot the procedure and how it feels like. Can anyone advise me on how painful it will be? Honest opinion. I'm really really terrified of the pain. Thanks.


Super Moderator
Staff member
Mar 27, 2006
United States
Hi Cheque,
Fillings should not be painful at all. The dentist should give you an injection of local anesthesia prior to doing anything and wait for a minimum of 5 minutes to allow the medicine to numb your tooth so that you do not feel anything during the procedure. The dentist may use a special numbing gel to numb your gums prior to injecting (you can request this if they do not offer it to you automatically) but even without it, you should not feel the injection as long as the dentist administers the anesthetic very slowly. Once you are numb you should only feel some vibration while they are removing the decayed part of the tooth. Other than that, you can expect to feel some mild-moderate pressure during filling (not painful-just annoying) and some air/water spraying to keep the area clear of debris. I was in your shoes at one time and my dentist and I established a stop signal of raising my left hand if I started to have any discomfort or just needed a break so that I felt more in control and it helped immensely with calming me down. I hope this helps. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask.


Junior member
Dec 10, 2014

I just had my very first fillings today (4 in total), I'm 29 years old and haven't seen a dentist for nearly 20 years!

I'm going to be honest and say that the only thing that hurt (and not even that much) was the needles. Everything else was just a lot of strange noises and scraping with their tools.

Don't fear the drills! They are loud, but they don't hurt at all because of the numbing.

My cavities were very, very bad, and LONG. On one bottom molar, the decay went from front to back along the gum line, was deep, and close to the nerve, required a lot of filling, but again, no pain.

I'll be going back to get my last few fillings on the other side of my mouth and I'm not nearly as worried right now. Close your eyes and let them do their work, you're in good hands.

This is coming from someone with pretty high health anxiety. Good luck!


Junior member
Jul 11, 2013
Hello! I have had fillings done many times sadly; while as a kid and as an adult.
I remember a lot of them being more annoying than painful. What I mean is, I didn't like the sound the drill made. It's a high pitched noise that is annoying, but I usually block that with my ipod on high volume.
The needles hurt, in my opinion, but I have a low pain tolerance. It hurts more in the front than in the back. Back needles I barely feel. If this bothers you ask the dentist to be gentle. It's a pinch.

This morning I am getting three teeth done in front, many cavities - mostly small, but a few big ones - done.
It's gonna be horrid with the sound, but I asked them for gas, so hopefully that will help me.
Why not try for sedation if it bothers you too?

There isn't any pain after the cavity is filled
I suggest you take a before pic, and then an after before the procedure.
I did that and I was really impressed and proud of myself in the end :thumbsup:!