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Dental Drama
luvmax1
So, apparently my ginigivitis has gone from mild to seriously dangerous.  There was a lot of bacteria in there, which could cause tooth loss.  Also the bacteria can spread into the bloodstream.  So the dentist recommended a treatment called Arestin, which is an antibiotic that gets put directly into the gum.  The cost of this treatment- $715.  Cash, upfront, since it's a new practice and they're not familiar with anyone yet.  That was a pretty big surprise too, when I called Thursday to make an appointment and found out that my regular dentist was gone.

Anyhow, I called my father, since I had a grand total of 6 bucks on me, and he went over the bank and withdrew the money.   Not without grumbling, of course, but he did it, because he's a good father and he doesn't want my teeth rotting out of my mouth.  I will be paying him back slowly, but I'll get there.  The only other option would have been actual surgery, and I'm really not too keen on having my gums cut open.

So far, I don't feel really strange, just sore from the usual cleaning her gave me first.  I'll need to get 4 cleanings a year instead of 2, which my plan won't cover, so I'll have to pay an additional $95 bucks every other cleaning.  This dental stuff is turning out to be quite expensive, but since the only other option is losing all my teeth, I don't have much of a choice.

On a funny note, Dr. Weiss told me has a practice in Scarsdale too, and I mentioned that my cousin was an orthodontist there, and it turns out he knows my cousin very well.  Refers patients to him, in fact.  I guess it's a small world after all.  (also, I don't really watch Grey's Anatomy, but Dr. Weiss reminds me of Eric Dane from that show.  Semi gray hair, quite handsome, and I got a good look at his very blue eyes while he was hovering over me.  So I suppose that's a plus.  Dr. Thierenbach was a very nice lady, but she wasn't as much fun to check out as the new guy.) 

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Ah, yes, the joys of dental work. I'm also on the 4-cleanings-a-year track, and my insurance, like yours only covers two a year. :-(

He prescribed an oral antibiotic too, tetracyclene. The list of side effects is tremendous- diarrhea, vomiting, rectal issues, BLACK HAIRY TONGUE! Fabulous.

HOLY CRAP! Hey, $715 is cheap if it keeps you in teeth. It doesn't sound as if the treatment was too painful, I hope it wasn't. My sympathies, believe me!

I kinda know how you feel, as I just paid $895 to have a cap over a tooth that had had a root canal completely replaced... and this was a cap that was supposed to last me the rest of my life. My previous (now retired) dentist hadn't seated it properly and there was a gap in the cement that had been letting in bacteria for the past 10 years. My dentist got out of the business because he was afraid he'd start making errors due to the Huntington's he was diagnosed with, and it seems he was right to do so.

It wasn't terribly painful, thank goodness.

My dental plan sucks. A few years ago I had to pay $1100 for a root canal. Then a year ago, the crown broke off, and the tiny metal post inside snapped, which meant that reattaching the crown wasn't possible. So I had to go have the whole tooth pulled. Jeez, I could have done that in the first place and saved myself $1100.

Er: my dentist doesn't have Huntington's, I mean Parkinson's, and he doesn't have much in the way of symptoms (he still goes skiing, apparently)... so I'm not quite as heartless as I sound there! He's a friend of my friend's landlord so I check up on how he is when I visit her.

HOLY CRAP with regard to your $1100 crown that broke: here's my question, why are dentists not held to a certain standard where they have to back up their work for a certain amount of time? Shouldn't your dentist pay for part or all of your costs and for your tooth-pulling? Shouldn't MY dentist apologize for screwing up my tooth in such a rookie-mistake manner and pay for my new crown or refund part of my old crown's cost? I doubt very much that your dentist meant for your crown to last a mere few years and I know my dentist didn't mean to mis-align my crown. But I doubt very much that either dentist would stick a crowbar in his pocket to help us out with the payments.

I never really thought about it, but you're absolutely right. The actual pulling didn't cost me anything, my crappy plan actually covers it. I wonder if it had happened sooner, then maybe the practice would have picked up the cost. But it was 3 or 4 years, so maybe it was too late. Certainly, nothing was said to be about a refund, and I didn't think to ask at the time.

Sorry about your dental problems! I'm glad your father could lend you the money. I hope the treatment works perfectly!

Thank you, Carol. I hope it works, too. I don't relish the idea of dentures at 36.

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