For the past couple of weeks, I'd had swollen, painful gums in one area, both on the outside and inside of the lower row of teeth. Finally, what I thought was a sore gum turned into a very painful, large abscess.
I do not have dental insurance, as I was between jobs. Although I now have a new job, benefits don't begin for another 2 months. I should have joined my husband's plan, but it's extremely expensive to add me on (he has the primo plan) so I thought I could just skate by until my benefits kick in May 1.
But, worried, I went ahead and got checked out by my husband's dentist. The prognosis? External tooth resorption. Not knowing any of my history, he explained it usually happens when there is trauma to the area. I told him that, in fact, I had trauma to my face. I was hit with a baseball at age 13, and at 15 had a traumatic cyst near where the now-dying tooth is. It was biopsied and found to be non-cancerous. BTW, I did break my jaw from that, but the site of the break was up toward my joint. The ball hit on the chin and must have damaged some root structure down on my lower row of teeth. I am 27 now, so the fact that I am just now losing the tooth is pretty random. And, of course, the fact that it happens during the one time in my life when I don't have insurance is just great.
So, I was like, "pull it!" But, then I was told that because I don't have insurance, that could create a pre-existing condition that could bar me from being covered under insurance later on for a potential bridge or implant. I called my upcoming insurance provider, and sure enough, they have a Missing Tooth clause.
So, here is my catch-22: Get the the tooth pulled now and be forced to pay out of pocket for bridge or implant, OR, wait in pain for 2 months, risk damage to adjacent teeth (one may need a root canal just due to the abscess), and be covered for the entire thing? BTW, the tooth is slightly loose, so I'm afraid it's going to break off...