Monday, August 22, 2016

bum tooth












It all started last Wednesday...a dull ache in my right cheek.  It got progressively worse with the pain coming and going and peaked last night.  Nothing like trying to sleep with a bad toothache.  Aspirin and Extra Strength Tylenol barely made a dent.  Called a new dentist in Alpine first thing this morning and luckily they had an opening at 10AM.  The folks that got stuck out here Saturday finally got out by noon on Sunday...leaving plenty of ruts in the road for me to follow while I shot out of here to make my appointment.

Just as I suspected, an old root canal and crown had finally gone bad.  Got a nice little abscess causing all the pain.  Have to wait a few days for the infection to calm down so I am on 6 days of antibiotics and some Tylenol 3 to make the wait bearable.  I am due to go back Monday for the extraction.  Funny thing is it has been 15 years since I have been to a dentist and that last trip was for the root canal and crown that finally failed...bought me 15 good years of biting with that tooth.  Also, I couldn't help but notice the x-ray technology improvements since my last trip.  No more biting down on a little clump of plastic and cardboard with real film inside and a target ring attached to aim the laser gun at.  This time I just put my chin on a shelf and got an instant digital panorama via a chopper cat scan of sorts.  77,88,69,0,B

18 comments:

JohnnyM said...

Never let teeth go unchecked! My brother Fred almost died (twice). Because he decided to spend $ on auctions & artifacts!

He just got all them removed surgically because of hazards of Multimyloma and the first molds didn't work so good.

BUT. He is healthier for the extractions, lived on yogurt, jello and soups...probably lost 20 unwanted lbs to boot.


Not a great story but solid truth, teeth, health...dentists are not the worst that can be...infections of bad teeth will kill ya

Janet said...

Did Fred ever get any more teeth? The tooth removal was probably the best thing that happened to him at this point. Glad to hear he recovered.

Larry G said...

well I feel for ya - nothing like a tooth abscess to ruin your days until dealt with.

Sounds like they can't do much more with it ... so out of it comes.

I still get the "card" in the mouth but now it's digital and the xray shows up instantly as an image on the computer screen. I just chipped a false tooth on a bridge ... 7K to fix it.

so right now I'm going with the shortened tooth. .. and thinking on the 7k....

JohnnyM said...

Fred is in the midst of new dentures. 6 weeks no teeth, the family history of our Dad's having dentures since he was 22 proves a point, clean, floss the ones you want to keep! Hated that woman that said it to me..I have a pretty solid set of real teeth and crowns

WhyR said...

Wow, Larry. 7K sounds awful steep. I'm lucky enough to live near a large university with a dental school and a clinic where patients are seen to by students (with an experienced professor of dentistry always near). It always takes 1-2 hours more for each appointment due to all the consulting and talking back and forth about each little detail, but it seems like a good investment in time because every decision is always well-considered- no rush to move the patients through the clinic as in private practice. Plus the materials and techniques are all the very latest available. And the prices are nice too- I'm considering an implant and have been quoted $1.5K for it.
On the other hand, I read that many people are going to Costa Rica to have expensive dental procedures done and saving enough to pay for a two week vacation to boot.

Margery Bills said...

Wow, I'm not sure if my clinic is that updated. I'll ask next week when I go.

Larry G said...

four teeth are involved at 1500 each for crowns. I have 2 implants that cost 2k each.

I probably could find cheaper... always concerned about the folks who do the work in terms of their qualifications and track record.

There's some pretty good irony on health care... and competition...

dental is heath care that in theory could benefit for competition as we often hear folks say is the problem with regular health care.. i.e. we need "competition" but if dental is any example - when it comes to things like crowns and implants.. I'm not seeing anything like a price war going on... in fact I see almost nothing... There are no "sales" no "ads". no one saying "we'll meet or beat all competitors prices

so in theory John should be able to "shop around" for the best price for his tooth, eh?

well .. maybe not so much... especially if you got roaring pain.. you're a "motivated" "buyer".

Margery Bills said...

In 1937 a man who married into my family died from teeth infection. I laid in bed in tooth pain from a root canal infected and they said I could pull it but I got in at U. Of TX dental school and they had an amazing little high powered drill and went down to the root and saved the tooth. My daughter does dental work because I impressed the importance. But flossing was a dead spot in the conversation for me. Now I am flossing. I do not know if it will do anything much now. It should help. Brushing just doesn't do much I realize. Bone loss is serious from not flossing anD I do not want surgery. The female dentist explained things to me in gruesome detail about surgery and got me to floss in sorts. Probably not perfect. When I was 31, I would have just pulled my teeth but a dentist showed me a movie so I have kept them. I wish they would have stressed flossing instead of yelling at me and calling me names. My teeth have had deep fillings since I was 9. My adopted mother did drugs and never showed me a toothbrush. Then came the root canals and crowns in all the back teeth. And later they were all redone. Cleaning teeth at the dentist too can help us live longer. The bacteria kills. Of course I have fillings in the front and some filled in cracked off teeth too. I have pretty teeth. Thank God for dentists.

MsBelinda said...

Larry, have you ever considered getting dental work done in Mexico?

I have no idea where you live but where ever it might be...7 grand is way too expensive. I live in Del Rio, Texas which is across the border from Ciudad Acuna, Coahuila, Mexico.

Do a Google search of this or any other border location and I can assure you that you would not even pay half the price for your dental procedure.

MsBelinda said...

John, I have always wondered the same thing...why being so close to the border would you not go to a dentist or doctor in Ojinaga, Chihuahua, Mexico?

Rita B. said...

Good luck John. Hope you feel better soon. I was going to say toothaches are the worst, but I was awoken this morning by a phone call from a coworker at the hospital with her husband who's in severe pain with kidney stones. These things sneak up on us. Chiming in on the dentistry in Mexico topic, same coworker's father went to Nuevo Progreso and had a complete set of dentures done. Extractions one day, new dentures the next (they were already staying in South Padre for a few weeks). This was in the spring of this year and everything's great. I've heard for many years that Americans flock to Mexico for excellent, low cost dentistry and cosmetic surgery. That said, I'll stick with my local dentist...however, I am going to South Padre in September...maybe I'll look in to that. Take care!

Larry G said...

re: Mexico - if I lived closer and could establish a relationship with a provider ...got to know their reputation... got to know their skills and trusted if something went sidesways they'd be there for me... I'd do it.

but dental like other health care is continuing care and I need to know and trust the provider over the longer term..

Perhaps having heard some horror stories of dental gone bad .. including people getting bone infections... losing part of their jaw... etc.. has scared me off..

the bridge they need to work on -lasted 25 years.... so that's a good thing...

but thanks for the suggestion... always open to considering..

Margery Bills said...

Larry, no recourse south of the border but many people go there with no problem. I am a big fan of university dental schools but often takes a long time or needs a reference and pull from a local dentist. There are charity and low cost clinics that are often good and where university students help out. One is the Dr. Frank Bryant Clinic (used to be Ella Austin Clinic) near W.W. White Rd. On East side of San Antonio, TX. It was built by Federal Government and Spurs basketball team for low income black people. But the only people I saw there were illegal Spanish people who spoke no English. Nice. They recommended me to University of TX S.A. who had updated equipment. People should have an address in the city with a rent receipt. Some people have proudly shown me their dental work from Mexico (maybe o.k. If no choice). But in some cases I was sad to see that some of the teeth were bigger and darker and did not look like Anglo (Caucasion) teeth. Just in passing maybe no one would notice.

Larry G said...

thanks Margery... good advice!! and yes had two root-canals where the guy used curved hand
"drills" where he manually extracted the curved root... without using a motor drill at all... and what he said was that if you used a regular straight drill you end up not being able to get the nooks and crannies unless you take more of the healthy tooth - and that longer term if you don't get all the root -it can blow up again later on or if you take too much healthy tooth.. it could fail structurally as it ages...

of course - we are so fortunate in this country to have access to people who are highly educated, highly skilled and highly experienced... but not cheap!

I once knew a guy - who said that for any given job - you could do it fast, or cheap or good but you had to pick two of the three... try it...for teeth...!! ;-)

Mary Charest said...

Sorry John -- as they say "I can feel your pain." I have always been frightened by dentists and pray fervently when in the chair. It's the money that scares me. I go, every 6 months if I can, and worry while they are picking at my teeth looking for a cavity. Thank God I am moving to Terlingua in a year or so. I have also been following the Mexico solution. I'd like to get all potential issues repaired in one sitting! Try clove oil for your pain.

WhyR said...

Beware the dentist who gently asks you, in a soft teutonic accent: "Is it safe?"

WhyR said...

https://youtu.be/2xBJERznOgA

Rev.jimmyleebob said...

Get on a plane. Go to Escazu Costa Rica.Right down the road from SJO. http://www.colinadental.com/cosmetic-dentistry/