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Dentistry/Past correspondence on pockets in teeth


Hi Dr. Backllund, I dont know if you remember me since you answer thousands of letters but I corresponded with you last year. I was the one who had the dentist that failed to recognize an 8 mm pocket and proceeded to give me 23 shots but was unable to numb. I of course left him and went to an excellent periodontist, Dr. Paul Rosen in Langhorne. He was able to save that tooth and did regeneration and osseous surgery on it. I also had the surgery done on my top tooth that had a 6mm pocket but was symptomatic (bleeding).  I have gone to a new dentist and I hope this one is better than the last one,  it is very hard to find a good dentist even though there are a lot of them.  I recently had a filling in my front tooth that had been there for 40 years partially break so I went to the new dentist and he replaced it. I became aware of it b/c of a little aching at the site.  He replaced it but when I flossed it is jagged and it still sometimes is achy. I went back for my cleaning and mentioned to him that it was jagged and he filed it but it is still jagged and sometimes has very mild aching that doesn't last long. I'm beginning to think that I picked another bad dentist. What are your thoughts?  I can't tell you how much I appreciated your kindness and compassion last year. I wish you were in my area although I have never had a root canal and really don't want one, haha. I would recommend you to other people.  Thank you so much for your help. Lynn

Hi Lynn,

Thank you for the kind words. I'm glad I was a help to you.  Actually I do remember you. You were really concerned about not being able to get numb and I don't blame you....can be really terrifying actually.

Finding a new dentist can be tough. Obviously, you need to have confidence in the professional you deal with and it sounds like you are really questioning the choice you have made. It's hard for me to tell you whether this filling is defective or not, but the fact you are questioning the service tells me you should probably find another dentist.

What I always tell patients who are in similar situations is to call some of the dental specialists in their area and find out what dentist the specialist goes to. In your case, you have found a very good periodontist. I would ask him who his dentist is. As specialists, we see the work and deal with the offices of lots of dentists, some good, some not so good, but we really have the pick of who we want working in our own mouths. It is almost a fool proof way to get a good dentist.

I hope this helps with your decision. Good luck!

Gary Backlund DMD, MSD  


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Gary Backlund, DMD, MSD


I am an Endodontist ( root canal specialist ) and can answer questions about root canals and their treatment. I cannot diagnose or treat online, but can answer general questions. I have been a specialist for 25 years and am Past President of the Washington State Association of Endodontists.


25 years practicing as a specialist

American Association of Endodonists, Past President Washington State Association of Endodontists.

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