The Difference Between Dental Plans And Insurance

A man name David in his late twenties called us three weeks ago, reporting that he had bit down on a bone in some chicken and immediately felt a sharp pain in one of his teeth. Since that time, he had consistently felt pain anytime he chewed or applied pressure to it with his tongue. He immediately thought that he may have somehow broken his tooth, but he could not see a fracture when he looked in the mirror. He did feel something missing at the base of the tooth, but assumed it was a filling he had gotten as a child that had simply fallen out. We told David that it was impossible to determine if the tooth was indeed broken or simply needed refilling. We urged him to come in immediately for examination so we could determine the best course of action. Go to Painless Dentistry for more information.

Most of the time, a broken tooth not only fractures a tooth, but actually splits off a part of it. Sometimes people recover these fragments and can clearly see a piece of the tooth missing in the area where it initially broke. In other cases such as David’s, a person may not find a tooth fragment. If the person examines the tooth in the mirror, they may not see where the crack actually is. However, they certainly feel the pain anytime any amount of pressure is put on the tooth. Broken teeth are painfully obvious to human beings, and almost impossible to ignore. The one good thing about this is most people immediately contact a dentist to stop the pain, which in turn allows the dentists to act more quickly and possibly save the tooth.

David, however, was an exception to this norm. Assuming that he probably had a missing filling, and seeing no evidence of a broken tooth in the mirror, he procrastinated calling a professional. It was not until the pain became increasingly worse that David finally picked up the phone and said he needed an appointment ASAP. When he arrived at our office, we first pulled his dental records using our computer. The first thing we noticed is that the tooth that was hurting him was next to a tooth that had been filled, but it had never itself been filled. The pain was coming from what had always been a healthy tooth–thus indicating the likelihood of a crack. Our next step was to confirm this with an examination with intraoral our camera and high-resolution monitor. Looking all around the tooth and near the gumline, we indeed found that part of the bottom inside portion tooth was indeed missing at just such an angle that David could not see it from a mirror. Even worse, the fragment that splintered off from the broken tooth had gone into the gumline. It was embedded so deeply that our only option was to extract the tooth completely. Refer to Dentistry Sandton for more information.

David was upset with himself at this point. He felt that if he had immediately acted when he first suspected the tooth was broken that it would have given us more of a chance of saving it. We reassured him that this was highly unlikely. When a fracture happens above the gumline, a crown can normally repair the tooth. This far beneath the gumline, however, negates the ability to cover the tooth adequately with a crown. David would have needed a new tooth even if he called us the day that he fractured it

David felt he was too young to get a false tooth over something as mundane as a chicken bone. We told him we completely empathized with his feelings, but reassured him at the same time that we could replace the broken tooth with a dental implant that would look identical to the one we would extract.

However, do not assume that just because David’s story ended well that procrastinating calling a dentist when you think you have a BROKEN tooth will pay off with the same happy ending. Waiting any longer in his case could have infected the root and resulted in a severe abscess and certain root canal. A BROKEN tooth is nothing to dismiss and needs immediate medical attention. Call a dentist immediately if you feel any sharp pains when you chew, or any pain whatsoever from even slight pressure on the tooth. Visit Dentistry Johannesburg for further information.

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