the tooth saga continues...

After spending a fair amount of time hanging around at bus stops yesterday, I made it to the dentist.
I didn't have an appointment, I was hoping he could just fit me in between patients for a quick smoothing of the rough edges and then I'd make an appointment for a proper filling.

Well, none of that happened. I got there just after the clinic opened, to find my dentist wasn't even beginning work until 10am.
So I sat down with my kindle and read until I was almost asleep, then got called in.

Dr M took a look at the molar and said smoothing the rough edges wouldn't do at all. There are so many old fillings already in the tooth, smoothing would just leave them all exposed and unstable. So he filled the whole side with a temporary filling, to stop it from ripping chunks out of my tongue*, then we discussed options.

Best option? Remove all the old fillings, insert a couple of stabilising pins, then build up a new filling to the original tooth size. I've had a tooth repaired in this way before, so long ago I don't remember when, but it is still there, still stable and never gives me any trouble. So that is what I will do. I'll be back there Wednesday morning to make the appointment for the work.

Then we'll probably discuss the rest of my teeth, it's been a while since I was there, probably one or two might need a filling by now.

*slight exaggeration.


  1. Sounds painful and expensive. Hope things go well.

  2. Really? No crown? It sure sounds like you might want one. :(

  3. Ouch. I feel for you (mouth and wallet).

  4. Oh man....I can't think of much worse than having to go to the dentist. Hope it all goes well.

  5. Hi River,

    Oh dear. My love of dentists knows no bounds.

    Sorry - I meant "hatred".




  6. I have two broken fillings at the moment I'm learning to live with them so far, my dentist has retired and I'm looking for another one.

  7. Dentists... ermagherd.... I could have a Cadillac for all the money I've spent at dentists. Are you sure you don't want to just have it pulled? It's cheaper!

    Good luck with the filling - make sure you ask for some laughing gas. It's the only thing that keeps me going.

  8. It sounds like it's not going to be as bad (or expensive) as you thought!!

  9. The only thing worse than dental visits are no dental visits. (And though I know this, I still procrastinate endlessly...) I hope all goes well with your temp and new fillings.

    Thanks for your good wishes on Klahanie's blog about my cover reveal. I appreciate them! :-)

  10. I'm between dentists because my last one was cap happy. I can't have the ragged edges smoothed without losing what little of my tooth is holding in the black filling. And yet, your dentist isn't going for a cap? I would be relieved.

  11. I'm sure you feel better now that you have made your decision. Best of luck to you,

  12. Ive had one fixed that way as well, it's been recapped now but was good for many years. I hope you get it all sorted quickly and without pain.

  13. Molly; it won't be at all painful, the tooth has had root canal work and is dead. I'm hoping my health insurance will pay for a good chunk of the cost.

    Happy Elf Mom; crowns are too expensive, I'm saving to get one on a front tooth, but this is a back molar that never gets seen, so the pin and build repair will be enough.

    Elephant's Child; the wallet will feel it much more than the mouth.

    Delores; I don't mind going, it's the cost that worries me more than anything else.

    Plasman; ha ha. I don't hate them. I do hate my faulty teeth, inherited from my mum.

    Merlesworld; ask around among your friends, see who they recommend. Broken fillings can lead to infections and abcesses.

    Cathy Oliffe-Webster; I'm sure my dentist plans home renovations whenever he sees me coming. I've had too many pulled already, way back in my teens when that was the only option. Losing another would see me on a liquid diet,because I'd have nothing to chew with.

    fishducky; crossing my fingers that it won't be.

    Lexa Cain; the only thing worse is going with toothache and having the dentist say he can't find any cause for it.

    lotta joy; I've vetoed several dentists for the same reason. My current dentist has known me for eight years now and knows I can't afford caps that aren't absolutely necessary.

    Manzanita; making the decision is always the hardest part. I'll be glad when it's done.

    Kymbo, it will be pain free, it's a dead tooth. but I need to keep it or I can't chew.

  14. Oooh that sounds highly unpleasant. And expensive :-( Good luck!

  15. Oh boy. You are in for some pain shock, if you haven't been to a dentist in a while. I wish you luck; ask for a pain killer prescription. No, DEMAND one.

  16. River, I hear ya on crowns being expensive. We have insurance and after with root canal we're still spending over $1500 each. :/

    I thought you guys had this system where they gave you medical care?

  17. sleepydwarf; unpleasant I can deal with, expense is another matter entirely. I'm glad I've been putting money aside for just such an occasion as this.

    Susan Kane; I've had this done before, there is no pain when working on a dead tooth. The root canal work on this one was done years ago.

    Happy Elf Mom; our Medicare doesn't cover dental, never has, which is a crying shame. Big mistake by our government, but I believe there are plans to change the system and include dental. I hope it happens. We do have a government dental scheme for pensioners and low income earners, you need to put your name on a waiting list and when your name gets to the top, you get very basic dental care, cleaning, fillings and dentures if you need them, for a small co-pay.

  18. Good luck next week and hope all goes well. Do you go to a government dental clinic where the worst of the costs are covered? I hope so as it's saved us hundreds of dollars over past years and our private health insurance covers the balance.

  19. Mimsie; I've had my name on the waiting list and just today got the letter saying I'm at the top of the list, so next week's appointment will be covered, after that there will be a co-pay. I'm so relieved.


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