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Dental Advice

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Health & Beauty MoneySaving
3 replies 343 views
freddie2freddie2 Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Health & Beauty MoneySaving
Following some dreadful experiences at the dentist as a child and adult I developed a real phobia of dentists and avoided them for about 25 years. Eventually I worked hard and overcame my fears with the help of hypnosis and attended the dentist two years ago. I was convinced I would end up needing full dentures, however only needed two extractions ( both teeth had been extensively filled) One of these was replaced with a bridge, and I have a gap where the other was ( upper right molar) Since then I have had regular dental hygienist appointments and both say my dental hygiene is excellent, my gum health is good (0-1) and I have good bone.
I have just had a routine check up with X-rays. I have an old (25 year( crown on a right lower molar which the dentist has identified as having decay .
He has suggested the following options; Removing the crown to see what lies underneath . If the damage is not too extensive, he may be able to fill the tooth and re crown it. ( he is not hopeful this will be the case)
Removing the tooth. He does not feel that a bridge would be appropriate as the neighbouring tooth is heavily filled.
An implant at a cost of about £2k. he does not do implants but the practice has a visiting implant specialist.
Does this sound reasonable. I really do not want another gap ( vanity!) but am anxious about an implant regardless of the cost!


  • ToothsmithToothsmith Forumite
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    I think you've done very well getting over this, and I'm glad you've now found a dentist who you're happy with and can spend time with you to explain options as well as he seems to have done.

    With everything you managed to have done so far, getting an implant put in really won't be any worse than the stuff you've had done up to now. I know it sounds scarier than other stuff - but when I watched someone putting one in - I was surprised by how gentle a procedure it really was. Certainly less traumatic than an extraction. Probably on a par with a big filling, or a reasonably easy root filling.

    If you asked - they might have some option to do it with sedation. That would be extra cost, of course - but just knowing it might be available might calm you down about the whole process.

    Crack on with it!!! You'll be fine!

    Oh - and the costs do sound perfectly average.
    How to find a dentist.
    1. Get recommendations from friends/family/neighbours/etc.
    2. Once you have a short-list, VISIT the practices - dont just phone. Go on the pretext of getting a Practice Leaflet.
    3. Assess the helpfulness of the staff and the level of the facilities.
    4. Only book initial appointment when you find a place you are happy with.
  • Mrs_ZMrs_Z Forumite
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    I was in a similar situation couple of years back where I developed an infection in the gum above a tooth that had a crown on. The dentist gave me 2 options; 1) to drill a hole through the crown and see what lied underneath and fix if possible - appx 70% success rate or 2) remove the tooth - 100% success rate (for treating the infection) but this would of course leave a gap (which could be filled by an implant later).
    I wanted to try and save the tooth if possible so went with option 1 on reasoning that if it failed, I'd still have option 2 left.
    It turned out that when the root canal had been done 20+ years ago, only 2 of the 3 roots had been filled so the remaining one had become infected. I waited for quite a few months before getting it treated as it was not sore and I had bad memories from previous root canal jobs. Once I got round to get it done, the dentist told me that the infection had spread but it was still treatable and the 3rd root was successfully treated and filled. In hindsight, it would have been better to done it sooner (smaller job) - so anyone reading this in a similar situation - take note and don't leave it for too long.
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