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Jaw bone infection from broken tooth

User Level:
Patient
Posted by: inPain  (2 years ago)
Five months ago, my second molar on the upper left side broke in half when I bit down into a fried chicken. I had a cavity in that tooth for a long time but I put off having it looked at since the tooth did not bother me at all.

Six days ago, I started having a mild pain on the gum around that tooth. The pain became terrible and I woke up one day with a swollen face. I immediately went to my regular dentist. He told me that based from the x-ray, the decay had reached under my bone and the tooth should be extracted. He gave me amoxicillin for a week. How long can I have this tooth? I don’t have dental insurance and can’t have this tooth extracted very soon. Can I ask the dentist to lance the abscess out to lessen the infection?
User Level:
Student
Posted by: mdhola  (2 years ago)
Dear,
If your dentist has advise you to get it extracted then there is no point to wait because of issues like insurance. That can infection spread very quickly and you might end up in ER and spending more then what you are expecting now! Get it done as soon as posible.
User Level:
Dentist
Five months ago, my second molar on the upper left side broke in half when I bit down into a fried chicken. I had a cavity in that tooth for a long time but I put off having it looked at since the tooth did not bother me at all.

Six days ago, I started having a mild pain on the gum around that tooth. The pain became terrible and I woke up one day with a swollen face. I immediately went to my regular dentist. He told me that based from the x-ray, the decay had reached under my bone and the tooth should be extracted. He gave me amoxicillin for a week. How long can I have this tooth? I don’t have dental insurance and can’t have this tooth extracted very soon. Can I ask the dentist to lance the abscess out to lessen the infection?


Patients had teeth pulled for at least a couple of thousand years before dental insurance. You can too. If you don't you may end up in the hospital.

What a shame you did not spend and insubstantial amount many years ago when the cavity started, and you would have a healthy tooth today instead of an infection and a potential space in your dental arch.

Lancing the abscess will buy you time, but not much. How long do you really want to go with pus draining out of an incision in your gums? Months and months?
Posted 2 years ago
User Level:
Student
Posted by: Novocaine  (2 years ago)
Five months ago, my second molar on the upper left side broke in half when I bit down into a fried chicken. I had a cavity in that tooth for a long time but I put off having it looked at since the tooth did not bother me at all.

Six days ago, I started having a mild pain on the gum around that tooth. The pain became terrible and I woke up one day with a swollen face. I immediately went to my regular dentist. He told me that based from the x-ray, the decay had reached under my bone and the tooth should be extracted. He gave me amoxicillin for a week. How long can I have this tooth? I don’t have dental insurance and can’t have this tooth extracted very soon. Can I ask the dentist to lance the abscess out to lessen the infection?


Well, since the maxillary sinus is in close proximity, a swelling from an infected upper molar abscess is definitely something you might want to treat ASAP. Your dentist will have to drain the abscess anyway but that will buy you only so much time until the primary source (the tooth) of the infection is removed. Moreover, you don't want to be on antibiotics/painkillers for an extended amount of time.

If you can't afford your dentist's charges, I'd suggest you search for dental schools in your area as their rates usually go half as low compared to the individual clinics. Also, if you are lucky and if you qualify, you could find students who'd happily use you as a test patient and do it for free. Other alternatives would include shopping around for an oral surgeon who'd do it for less or, try and negotiate with your current dentist, or get into an affordable payment plan of some sort.
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: Airmid  (2 years ago)
Hi there -

I have a history of tooth problems and to make matters worse, I have very soft teeth and bone loss due to medical conditions. So, like you, I'm no stranger to having a broken tooth. I had two break several years ago suddenly (they are side by side) and at that time it was determined they could not be saved. I was in my twenties at the time and stubbornly refused to have them pulled.

To make a long story short, I recently suffered from a dental abscess from them after years of not having issues. To be honest, having a tooth pulled is cheaper then pretty much anything else you could do at this point in times. I had both pulled at the same time, minimal amount of recovery pain and no issues during healing.

If you don't have a regular dentist, ask your family and friends for referral. A lot of dental offices are willing to work with you for payment plans (I feel the no insurance pain also, I'm a disabled veteran with no dental insurance).

Anything you do outside of extracting that tooth will only keep you in pain, cost you more money and may lead to further complications. The extractions hurt me way less then the infection.
User Level:
Dentist
"A lot of dental offices are willing to work with you for payment plans (I feel the no insurance pain also, I'm a disabled veteran with no dental insurance"

That is untrue. There are no dentists I have ever met in my career who will extract teeth on credit. Why? They have no recourse. If the patient doesn't pay, what can they do? Put the tooth back in? And honestly, virtually never do emergency extraction patients make good patients who return for regular treatment. They always just return sporadically to have their teeth extracted. So nobody wants to extend credit to these people. Banks are for loaning money, not dentists.

Posted 2 years ago
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