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Broken filling Weeks to wait Where can I get Pro advice?

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Not the only one here, I have a cracked filling in a molar and dentists can't treat it till the coronavirus passes. I know from experience that if you leave a tooth exposed for a few weeks, bacteria get in, damages the interior of the tooth, and in due course the tooth dies. (It happened to me a few years back.)
Who can advise on how to look after a cracked filling and keep the tooth safe for a prolonged period?
Doesn't seem to be any phone advice from any dentist we know.
Only advice, from a reception lady (well meant) was to put in a tooth repair kit. But they are not meant to be left in for more than 48 hours, and could make the situation worse by trapping debris. I am using warm soapy water, but don't want to push it around with a brush too much in case I make it worse.
It may not even need drilling, to put a clean temporary filling in, as it's a new break and not a "bad" tooth - I had my checkup just in January!
Are there any dentists here who can advise? Or anyone with personal experience of a long term broken filling?

Replies

  • edited 25 March at 7:25PM
    brook2jack2brook2jack2 Forumite
    105 posts
    100 Posts Name Dropper
    edited 25 March at 7:25PM
    do as your dental receptionist advised , use a temporary filling kit, keep the tooth clean by brushing well and keep a low sugar diet to stop any decay getting worse, take appropriate painkillers. 

    You will not get any treatment for a simple lost filling for a while so a temporary filling kit will have to do , it is better than nothing. Don't worry about the two days , the advice is to stop people trying to use this as a permanent solution.

    Every dentist now has to follow strict protocols to protect themselves and the public as dental treatment is very high risk. So unless it is a dire emergency you will be advised self care by receptionists who will be trained to give advice, and will have a dentist on hand to double check. 
  • ShamsanShamsan Forumite
    163 posts
    Seventh Anniversary 100 Posts Combo Breaker

    Thanks for your input. I have been able to get a call from my surgery since then, and she said, after going through my situation, the same thing about using the temporary filling. That is reassuring. She did say that in normal times they would get me in quickly (but of course these are not normal times) and at least I am now on their "needs an appointment" list which they were not able to do on Monday. The tooth is already restless, and I can't brush it clean as it's a narrow crack, but am using warm soapy water. I am not getting pain yet, but from experience, there isn't a painkiller which stops tooth pain. Any suggestions are welcome!
  • brook2jack2brook2jack2 Forumite
    105 posts
    100 Posts Name Dropper
    For suggestions ask your dentist who knows your medical history and what's safe and appropriate for you  , not random people on the internet.
  • edited 26 March at 4:46PM
    mac.dmac.d Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts
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    edited 26 March at 4:46PM
    Heard a dentist talking on Radio5live about this very thing this morning. If no or little pain they said just use the temporary filling available from pharmacies. If in pain or if there's any facial swelling you should phone your own dentist back and they may give you antibiotics or something to calm it until such time as your dentist will re-open.
    If in lots of pain, phone your dentist back as you may get sent for emergency treatment. I missed the start of it but it sounded like emergency dental treatment will be carried out at a hub which will have a section for non Covid-19 & Covid-19 patients. 
  • ShamsanShamsan Forumite
    163 posts
    Seventh Anniversary 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Thanks for the responses.  I now have a temp filling in place. I also have a low headache. And I also know that if I don't do anything further until I get pain, there is a very good chance I till lose the tooth. :-(  Thanks for the reminder about antibiotics. I wonder if anyone will give me any until I report pain ... by which time, too late.
    Yes, the NHS emergency dental treatments are being done at hubs, and only the most extreme cases.
    Oddly, some USA practices are much clearer that leaving a filling untreated can result in root canal surgery. They seem to be more ready to scare patients than we are ... but it's true, nonetheless.
  • ShamsanShamsan Forumite
    163 posts
    Seventh Anniversary 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    For suggestions ask your dentist who knows your medical history and what's safe and appropriate for you  , not random people on the internet.
    Seriously, I do understand that, but in the past I have found that as well as input from my doctor or dentist, the actual experiences of people I don't know have been helpful to me (with other conditions). In a longish life I have been with many good dentists, and not one of them ever mentioned that if you leave a filling untreated, the tooth is likely to be damaged enough after a few weeks that the root will die. It just doesn't come up! They expect us to get it treated asap, and normally we would ... these are exceptional times.
    Also of course I can't get my own dentist - for all I know, he's self isolating. I'm grateful to the dentist at the practice who did call me back.

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