Too many fillings, too soon?

Discussion in 'Dental Archive' started by rseanes, May 19, 2006.

  1. rseanes

    rseanes Guest

    I have a question about my dentist that I hope someone in this group
    can assist me with.

    I never had a cavity throughout my entire childhood or adolescence,
    though my childhood dentist was always aware that my teeth have always
    had very deep "pits" in them--not cavities, just deep pits, which he
    knew based on my parents' and my siblings' teeth, were normal for me.
    I did, however, have a class III malocclusion which was treated
    successfully with braces and surgery while I was in high school. The
    braces were taken off just before I started college, and their only
    side effect was some decalcification of certain teeth.

    The first time I ever needed any sort of fillings for any cavities at
    all was approximately 4 years later, when my longtime dentist (the same
    one I'd had since childhood) retired; the guy who took over for him
    decided, based on my x-rays, that I needed 5 fillings, which I
    grudgingly got because I was moving to New York and didn't have any
    time to waste.

    Six months later when I was due for a cleaning, I went to a new dentist
    here in New York based on a co-worker's recommendation. She told me
    that I needed ANOTHER 5 fillings, which included the replacement of at
    least 1 of those original 5.

    Fast forward to maybe 2 years later. I've been going to the same
    dentist routinely, getting cleanings and exams every 6 months. At my
    last appointment, the dentist told me that everything looked good.
    However, Monday she told me that not only do I need 3 MORE fillings,
    but that there are 4 additional "trouble" spots that she thinks COULD
    develop into cavities, and prescribed a high-fluoride toothpaste.

    My question: How likely is it, based on the fact that I had such a
    clean dental history for so long, that I'm being hustled? Am I
    justified in seeking out a second opinion? From my understanding,
    cavities do not develop this rapidly--is it even scientifically
    possible that I could have developed 3 full cavities in six months?
    And finally, should I make the dentist aware that I've always had deep
    pits that aren't necessarily "sticky" that would be better served by
    just being watched, instead of letting them reach for the drill right

    Thanks for your help. As I don't have any dental insurance, my wallet
    thanks you too.

    Ryan Eanes
    rseanes, May 19, 2006
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