I had a toothache this week and went to see the first dentist who could see me. I tend to avoid them all because in my experience they’re just rough and a tad sadistic. The dentist did an x-ray. He said there is a large cavity underneath a current filling, He doesn’t feel the tooth can be saved and says to plan on an extraction, bone grafting, and dental implant to replace it. Not only is the unbelievably expensive, but the idea of all that work also terrifies me. Two of those he says are surgical. Is all this necessary for a simple toothache?
I’m a little dubious of the recommendations you are getting from this dentist. Though, bear in mind, I haven’t actually examined your teeth. That being said, these are the reasons I think you should get a second opinion.
A Tooth Infection is a Dental Emergency and Will Hurt
You said your tooth had just started hurting. However, for a tooth to be as far gone as your dentist is declaring, that tooth should have been hurting for a while. In all likelihood, it would have been hurting for months. Dental infections are painful.
Secondly, a tooth that is destroyed and can’t be saved would be obvious. The dentist would not have even needed to do an x-ray. There would be a huge gaping hole. Additionally, the filling would have already fallen out.
Save Every Tooth You Can
I think it is important to save every tooth you can. Not only are our natural teeth the best solution, but it will save you a ton of money and time. Tooth replacements, like dental implants, are expensive and require surgery. Even if the dentist does everything right, the procedure can still fail.
Put that time and money into saving the tooth if at all possible. You may only need a dental crown at this point, with a possible root canal treatment.
Get a Second Opinion
I want you to see another dentist for a second opinion. However, I don’t want you to tell him what your previous dentist said. Just go in and tell him or her your symptoms. You don’t want the opinion of another dentist to sway them, especially if they happen to be friends and feel a sense of loyalty to their peer. Some dentists are even willing to give free second opinions.
You should also know not all dentists lean toward the sadistic. There are some gentle dentists out there.
This blog is brought to you by Fountain Valley Dentist Dr. Tammy Tran