Half a tooth missing, lost filling, what to expect?


Joined
Mar 5, 2020
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My plastic filling got loose a few days ago and fell out yesterday. In the past this tooth was drilled and filled two times, 4 and 1 years ago. I don't drink, smoke or take any meds, but I do like sugary food. Now I completely cut down on everything sweet, but I still feel really bad about this, like having a time bomb in my mouth. I went to get an appointment at a completely new dentist. They asked me if it hurts, I said not much, so I got the appointment in two weeks' time without further questions. Just by the looks, how serious is this? Should I not look for a more urgent appointment? Also, can you tell me what to expect? I would very much prefer to keep the tooth alive, is it possible to fill this once more without a root canal?
 

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honestdoc

Verified Dentist
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It's hard without x-rays to view internally. I'm suspecting you may need a root canal or very close. You may also need a crown (very expensive). Unfortunately sugar can cause a lot of damage as you know. Keep calling for cancellations or find a more available dentist.
 

A_s

Joined
Jun 23, 2019
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If the tooth has no pain or it only has pain when exposed to air/cold/hot and lasts for seconds but does not linger, most of the case it is fine. But if you want a more precise diagnosis you will need to have a thorough examination and further tests (including radiographs) to determine whether the tooth is vital or not. This should be treated as soon as possible but is not a dental emergency.
 
Joined
Mar 5, 2020
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Thank you, both of you, for your replies. This is relatively good news, so my tooth might still get a chance. When exposed to too much hot/cold I do feel pain that does not linger. I have decided to keep staying away from sugary food and try looking for another dentist too, however since I haven't had any serious pain yet, and even a slight pain that was present for the entire previous year after eating anything sour/sugary like apples or chocolate, I guess the former filling was not sealing perfectly and now my tooth gets some relief. I would not mind having a crown if it is done well, I even consider a gold crown if that's possible. Will try to share the results. Have a great day or night!
 
Joined
Mar 5, 2020
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UPDATE: In the end I waited out the two weeks. Dentist said exactly as you have described. I was recommended to get a new plastic filling. I did not get an x-ray or anything just another drill and fill. I felt a slight discomfort around the tooth for a week and a half. Then the filling was perfect for about half a year but is now showing signs of minor leakage again. What I mean by that is when chewing some harder food I get an occasional pain spike in that tooth. Other teeth are good. I seriously cut down on sweets, so I guess either the plastic as a filling material has the tendency to deform over time or my tendency to eat harder food such as rare steak is the culprit of such short filling life. Do you guys know a better solution that - even at the cost of higher price and more work involved - would last significantly longer?
 
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honestdoc

Verified Dentist
Joined
Jun 14, 2018
Messages
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The tooth had a lot of damage. A crown will last longer but it is more costly. Make sure the tooth does not need a root canal (vital response to colds, no pain, no swelling).
 
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