I’m a little worried. I went to an emergency dentist because of a tooth which was in pain. He told me he didn’t see anything visible on the x-ray, but based on my description of symptoms he thought I cracked the tooth. He wanted to crown it first to see if the tooth could be saved. We did that, but the pain is still there. Now the tooth next to it is gray. Did he damage it or misdiagnose it?
A graying tooth means that the tooth is dead or dying. Without seeing an x-ray it would be impossible for me to tell exactly what the problem is, but I can give you three possibilities.
1. Your emergency dentist misdiagnosed the issue and crowned the wrong tooth. It’s always possible for dentists to get things wrong. Everyone is human after all. The only way to tell if this is what happened is to get a second opinion. Have another dentist look at the original x-rays and see if the real problem was visible.
If he did misdiagnose you, it is reasonable for you to expect a refund on all work done, including the appointment and crown. Then, you can have him treat the actual problem or, if you’ve lost faith in him, have the second dentist work on your tooth.
2. This is the least likely scenario, but worth mentioning. There is always the possibility that you happened to have trauma to the tooth adjacent to your crown that is now graying, at a later date. Unlikely, but possible.
3. More likely is the fact that both teeth experienced trauma at the same time, but the second tooth is just now showing evidence. That often happens with graying teeth. One tooth was cracked, which you instantly feel the pain. A second tooth is damaged and the blood flow cut-off, but you don’t realize it until the tooth starts to change colors. This tooth will likely need a root canal treatment and porcelain crown itself.
Why Some People End Up With Dental Emergencies.
This is not the case with everyone, especially patients in your situation where trauma is what sent you to the dentist. But, it’s worth mentioning for other patients out there who may struggle with going to the dentist.
You may find this surprising, but many Americans don’t look forward to going to the dentist. Some, out of intense dental anxiety, avoid it altogether. That often causes more pain and problems than if they came in for check-ups when problems could be caught early.
Fear isn’t the only reason people shrink from coming. Sometimes financial strains make it challenging and it just doesn’t seem important enough for them to go. When that happens, it’s better to find an affordable dentist who’ll work with you financially than to ignore the issue completely and end up with a severely abscessed tooth.
This blog is brought to you by Dr. Ryan Noah.