Thursday, February 28, 2013

Is It Safe?

If you are a movie buff you may get where this post is heading, due to the title I gave it.
If not, read on.....

I have my dentist appointment yesterday morning.
The result today is that I am not in as much pain and I have to go back in 2 weeks to have the root canal procedure finished, then another appointment with my regular dentist for a permanent filling put on the tooth.

The reason the procedure couldn't be finished in one day is because though I attempted to alert the dentist to the anomalies in my mouth, she didn't take my words seriously.  After all, I am just a dumb patient and I don't have a dental degree, right?

I told her about the tooth.....well the space beside the tooth she was going to work on, the space which once held a tooth......a tooth upon which a root canal was attempted and failed, due to the way in which my tooth's nerves were inaccessible.  That tooth had 3 nerves, one of which was inordinately thin and twisted in such a way that it couldn't be killed.  In the end, the dentist killed and filled 2 of the nerves and then encased the tooth in filling material so that the live nerve was protected.  I got about 5 years more before that conglomeration wore off and I ended up having the tooth pulled.

The new dentist "poo-pooed" what I had to say and set to work.  The first root, then the second root done, no problem.
Well no problem except for when she went into a nerve that wasn't deadened yet and I about levitated to the ceiling!!!
Then she went digging for #3.
And things came to a standstill.
She couldn't find the root.
She stopped 2 times during the procedure to take just another x-ray.
She finally found it and then kept having to change the size of her tool or whatever they use to get into the nerve.....each one being a smaller number than the last.  She started with a 6 and we were down to a 2 when she stopped the appointment and sent me on my way, still without accessing that last nerve.

I had been in the chair for over an hour and 15 min.
The novacaine was wearing off.
And she had another patient waiting to be seen......who probably had better roots than me too. lol

So I traded my throbbing tooth pain for soreness and pain in my mouth and gums and pain in my head, neck, shoulders and back muscles from all the clenching and stiffening my body went through during the procedure.

Then I got to reading the paper they gave me AFTER I had the work done and not BEFORE.....the one that tells me all the crap that could go wrong and how the root canal comes with no guarantee that the tooth can be saved, yadda, yadda, yadda......
Add in that they were drilling into a tooth with a crown and they make no guarantees that they won't screw up the crown(meaning it will break and I'll need a new one for another $900, of which insurance pays $400).

Whether they finish this root canal or not, I am out just shy of $1000 for it(before we get some $ back with our insurance).

The little voice in my head keeps telling me I should have just had that tooth pulled because that's where this is heading anyway.

I just wish it was over.....



  1. Not sounding good to me. Ugh. I hope it all works out. I hate it when the docs don't listen to the patients.

    Good luck. Hang in there.

  2. I traded my old PCP because she would not listen to me... I mean, why else am I paying all of these deductibles for if you wont listen to me and go on and on about what you think I have vs what I know is going on? (My old doctor thought I was having allergies when I was in the middle of an asthma attack. NOT pretty! She sent me home with allergy OTC). Hope you feel better soon. Hope they'll listen to you next week during this next appointment!

  3. oh Sluggy,
    That is horrendous! I spent 3 hours in the dental chair while my tooth and I were tortured while I cried, no fault of the dentist. Now, fear keeps me from taking proper care of my teeth.

    You will have spent half the cost of an implant before it is over. Why not go with and implant before you invest more in what you deem a lost cause? You can have one implant and a wide top to cover the space those two teeth should span.

    I am just terrified of the dentist but would go for an implant if I could afford it.

    Why do doctors and dentists think patients are stupid? I think they want to be the one who can prove us wrong since we are not trained.

  4. You poor, baby.
    You need to watch Bill Cosby's Himself and the part about the dentist. Every time I have to go to the dentist, I think of that.
    The last time I was at the dentist, mine was sick and I had some yuts. He told me my one and only wisdom tooth had to come out. Why I asked? It has never given me any problems. He said it was because I couldn't get to it to clean it. So I asked the very stupid question, "well does it have a cavity?" And the answer was, "No but you could get one." Hmmmm, well all of my teeth could get cavities so should I have them all pulled?
    We go to Doctors and Dentists and pay them ridiculous amounts of money for what? We have to pay because they have a doctorate and yet so many seem lacking in smarts.

  5. I was cringing as I read this. I'm sorry that your dentist is incompetent.

  6. I am terrified of the dentist as you know so well so last time he told me I needed a root canal in a back tooth I had him pull it. If it was in the front I still would have had him pull it and then got a fake

    I miss blogging...sigh...

    1. We miss u too! Hope you, DH, mom and the kids are doing well.

      Sluggy - sorry to hear about this experience. Troubles with the teeth are the worst. Probably because you tend to be conscious when they do the work. And the sounds! *shudder*

  7. Poor Sluggy! I literally feel your pain as I have weird roots & nerves as well. I always have to request extra novocaine for any procedure as well, but thankfully my current dentist listens.

    We are getting ready to empty our savings and give it to our dentist: I will be getting a crown this month for the tooth that cracked in half two weeks ago, and my husband will be getting two crowns as well as an extraction and implant for a front tooth that broke off at the gumline. Good times.

    We have good insurance, but this is still going to cost us dearly.

  8. I feel so fortunate that I have always had wonderful dentists. And pretty good teeth. I hope you are out of pain soon.

  9. So sorry! I've only had 2 cavities and my wisdom teeth out so I can't imagine what you're going through.

  10. I gritted my teeth all the way through your post! I SO HATE going to the dentist - I have a crown story that would make you want to NEVER go to a dentist again!! it was THAT bad! So I commiserate with you deeply and hope your story has a happy ending!


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