Can You Kiss After a Dental Filling?

Written & Reviewed by Dr David Chen

You are able to kiss your significant other after a dental filling but we recommend a simple kiss such as a peck on the lips or on the cheek. That is because the more involved or intense types of kissing such as making out or french kissing are not advisable.

Teddy bear kissing anatomy skull
Teddy bear kissing anatomy skull

Technically, nothing is stopping you from partaking in amorous activities but there are reasons for our recommendations which we will explain below.

Simple kisses are okay

You will most likely be numb from the local anesthesia after a dental filling but that won’t prevent you from kissing your partner. Yes, your lips and tongue may be numb but your ability to kiss won’t be disabled. You can still move them around if you wanted to despite being numb.

However, our recommendation is to only engage in a simple kiss such as a peck on the lips or a peck on the cheeks. Those two actions will not be limited nor restricted.

What you can do:

  • Kiss on the lips.
  • Kiss on the cheeks.

The only downside is that you may not be able to feel the full sensation of the kiss. The side of your lip that is numb will not feel anything from the kiss since the nerves are anesthetized. You may be kissing but you may not even realize it.

Intense kissing isn’t recommended

A simple kiss may be okay but any form of intense kissing is not recommended. The reasons aren’t due to physical limitations but more so because of the numbness from the dental filling.

Reasons to avoid making out or french kissing after cavitity fillings:

  • You can’t feel it. The numbing from the local anesthesia takes away all of the sensations from your lips, cheek, and tongue. Most people kiss because it is pleasurable but if you lose all of your sensations, it won’t be as pleasant.
  • Poor muscular control. When your lips and tongue are numb, they won’t move the way that you want to. You may be doing things that you didn’t intend because you can’t feel them.
  • Could be embarrassing. Your partner may think that you’re a bad kisser because you’re numb. Your tongue could be going into places you don’t intend.

Essentially the anesthesia can ruin your amorous experience and it may even be embarrassing. Perhaps abstaining from making out would be preferable.

When to resume kissing

Waiting until after the numbness wears off would be the best time to kiss after getting a dental filling. On average, it may take about 2-3 hours after your procedure before the anesthesia wears off.

Below is a table showing the four most commonly used local anesthetics in dentistry and how long they last.

Local AnestheticDuration of Action
Lidocaine with epinephrine120-240 mins
Articaine with epinephrine60-230 mins
Bupivacaine with epinephrine180-480 mins
Mepivacaine45-90 mins
Local anesthetics and how long they last

Once the sensation returns to your face, lips, cheek, and tongue, it is safe to kiss. You will have regained all of the functions in your soft tissue and muscles.


With all of that being said, there is an exception and that is if you did not receive any local anesthesia for your procedure. If the cavity was very shallow and located solely within the enamel, your dentist may not need to numb you for it.

The reason that shallow fillings don’t need numbing is because the enamel does not have any nerve endings since it isn’t alive. Drilling on the enamel will not elicit any sensitivity nor any pain.

Basically if you’re not numb you don’t need to abide by any of our recommendations in the previous sections. Most of the precautions were due to the fact that you’re still numb.

Dental filling aftercare

After your dental filling, there are certain dos and don’ts that are a part of your aftercare. You can’t just do whatever you want afterwards!


  • Wait until numbness wears off to eat.
  • Brush and floss your teeth like you normally do.
  • Take pain medication as needed since the tooth or gums may be sore.
  • Salt water rinsing if the gums are irritated.


  • No hot beverages while you’re numb.
  • Avoid super hard foods for the rest of the day.
  • Avoid smoking until anesthesia wears off.


Despite being numb from having a tooth filling done, you’ll still be able to kiss your significant other. Although our recommendation is to only give a simple kiss rather than partake in an intense activity like french kissing.

For the latter, it is better if you wait for the anesthesia to wear off before you do it. It’ll only be for a short amount of time, about 2-3 hours on average before your face is back to normal. At that point you may feel free to return to doing whatever it is that you want.


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Our purpose at afterva, is to encourage you to seek in person care with a doctor. It's not meant to be a substitute for medical advice.

A lot of nuances cannot be detected without an in-person clinical exam, which means it is near impossible to diagnose and treat virtually.

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