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Dentistry/Second Crown/Pain

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Question
I am so frustrated.  I had a crown done about 15 years ago.  I got decay under the tooth, my dentist told me to pull it, and have an implant.  I have been going to this particular dentist my whole life.  He always seems to manage to find a way to spend thousands of dollars even with insurance.  I didn't want an implant, I wanted a bridge..he said that was old school.  I go to another dentist and he says, I can clean the decay, operate on the gum line and crown this.  I agree and I'm happy.  The problem is, now I have major gum pain, my gum bleeds, along with the rest of the teeth surrounding the crown.  I have felt that this was not put in correctly, or maybe my last dentist was correct in stating he couldn't save the tooth.  I wonder if this new dentist just wanted the money and the patient.  I'm so annoyed.  So now, my gum is so sore, never felt like it healed properly, hurts to floss and is tender all the time.  Also, I always feel like I have to floss this tooth, like something is stuck in there, but nothing is in there.  As an fyi, I get a cleaning every 3 months, I am always getting some major work done, I am constantly buying the best of everything for my teeth and I am still so disappointed.  NOw I feel like I shouldn't have this new dentist work on my tooth anymore, and I'm embarrassed to go back to my  old dentist.  I'm so aggravated with the dental world right now..how does one person spend thousands yearly and yet is still unhappy..UGH.  Help..what is wrong with my tooth/gum line?  I also had a rootcanal on this tooth so I know it's not that.

Answer
Hi Robyn,

I am going to preface my answer with, "I am not a dentist" because I am about to go on a rant about one of my pet peeves!

My personal opinion is that a good general dentist, knows a little bit about most dental specialties, but is not the best expert in any particular specialty.  The general dentist is the best place to go for the general maintenance and upkeep of your teeth.  But if you need the very best care and focus in a particular type of work that you need to have done in your mouth, then you should see a specialist.  My best hope is that general dentists know when to do the work themselves, and when to know that a referral is in order.

Why am I saying all this?  Because if I wanted a tooth implant or replacement, I would want a dentist who primarily does teeth replacement and restoration......as opposed to a dentist, who fills a cavity one day, does a crown the next, and then a general checkup the day after.  I want somebody, who does dental implants, restoration or veneers every single day he goes into the office.

It sounds like you are leaning toward going back to your original dentist.  I think he was correct in advising you that an implant was preferable to a bridge.  I have always though of bridgework as a less expensive, low risk quick fix.  There are probably some cases where patients have no choice and have to do bridgework.  But in a perfect world, everyone would get an implant.  Since my gut tells me I like your original dentist, go back and ask him what he thinks of the idea of you seeing a Prosthodontist.  This would fit my "personal opinion" that a specialist usually does the best work.

Don't be embarrassed to go back to your old dentist.  He may even take satisfaction in being right, or "I told you so."  Your embarrassment will only last for that office visit....but your teeth that you live with are for a lifetime.

Best Regards,
Jonathan
Patient Point of View

Dentistry

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Jonathan at PatientBabble

Expertise

My area of expertise from the patients point of view would be Dentistry/TMJ plus the speech challenges that these jaw and bite problems sometimes represent. Over the years I have seen a multitude of dentists, orthodontists, oral surgeons, speech therapists, neurologists and other health professionals who all had an opinion about my TMJ/bite problem. I AM NOT A DOCTOR...but would purely be a patients point of view type person. I "get it" when people say they tried to explain to their dentist what their TMJ/bite problem is and that they are misunderstood. I can listen to people's trials and tribulations and there is a good chance I have been down that road before. I can make suggestions as to what people can do at home, or what questions to ask their doctor or dentist when they visit. I will try and recall information or experiences that may be helpful to you.

Experience

About 25 years ago, I had my wisdom teeth out and since then my bite has never felt "normal." For whatever reason, the first sensation I remember was not that my bite was off.....but rather that my normal tongue and speech patterns had been impeded. I spent years going to different dentists, who lumped me into their generic version of what they knew about TMJ. The majority of dentists believe they can treat TMJ, but only those whose primary focus is TMJ treatment, are really any good at it. Any dentist, can take an impression of your teeth, send that impression off to the lab and have them make a night guard. That is the easy part. The tricky part is what the dentist does with the night guard, once receiving it from the lab. The dentist has to do a "fitting" where they tailor the night guard to be evenly balanced and comfortable in your mouth. Sometimes it can take a few visits, because further adjustments need to be made to the night guard appliance, to get it just right. I have found that dentists, who have had the most practice, do a better job at fitting your appliance. It's almost like an art form.

Organizations
Jonathan's Blog is: https://patientbabble.squarespace.com/jonathans-blog

Education/Credentials
College Graduate with Bachelor of Arts Degree

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