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Root Canal vs. extraction - Page 3

post #41 of 79

Excellent Site

I found this site when I was looking for info on root canals. It is basically about dental self suficiency. Hope it helps those find some answers...

post #42 of 79

Antibiotics for a root canal? Opinions needed.

Any opinions on the necessity of getting antibiotics for a root canal? I am getting one soon and they said they will have me take antibiotics between my first and second appointments. I said, "Well, why don't I just take the antibiotics if I actually get an infection?" She said, "If you get the infection, you'll be miserable for 48 hours while the antibiotics take effect."

What would you guys do? I don't want to take antibiotics unless absolutely necessary. Anyone have experience either way?
post #43 of 79
I think it's more complicated than that, and I would love to read some opinions. Dental bacteria is strongly linked to heart attacks...when it gets dislodged, it can end up attacking the valves of the heart. Lots of heart attacks happen very soon after dental work which is why they are more often preventatively prescribed before major work. A dentist could answer better, but I've known several people who had larger abcesses than suspected until he root canal was started, at which point all that infection can more easily get into your bloodstream, is my understanding. I don't know how correct that is.

I'm intersted in the answer, since i have some valve prolapse, so they want me take take antibiotics before dental work of any kind, even cleanings...dunno if I should. Effective natural ways to work on this?
post #44 of 79

help smilemomma!

I've used my search button and tried hard not to have to bug you, but here I go! My ped dentist is telling us all here that a stainless steel crown is an absolute must after a pulpotomy. After research here, that doesn't seem accurate, can you help me out with what I am missing? We noticed a bubble above a tooth that has had a cap on it for over a year and we absolutely do not want it replaced with a ssc.
Also, when is a spacer not necessary? My 3 yr old dd had a tooth pulled a year ago that had seriously abcessed and our ped dentist said a spacer was not necessary. Now I am concerned this was an error. Lastly, it is impossible to get medication down my dd and I know the first thing my dent will want is to get her on an antibiotic. I understand from reading other posts that you do not feel this is always necessary. Would you recommend any homeopathic stuff that has antibiotic properties that we might try? Thank you so much...I'm not sure I'd have survived the last year and a half of dental visits without being able to come here and read and educate myself.
post #45 of 79
Hello out there...just wanted to give an update. Saw ped dentist today and she does want dd on antibiotic, then will see her again in two weeks for a possible pulpotomy/draining? I feel like with my dd history it could be dangerous to wait, but I also appreciate her being conservative. We've never taken antibiotics before but I am trying to use a crushed pill mixed in juice, the pharmacist said this was okay. She already has raging diarrhea and I feel awful. I guess we'll just take it one day at a time. Still wondering about the spacer if anyone out there has any info on that. Thanks.
post #46 of 79

drilling holes and putting in meds?

Okay, so today is my day to post! We saw ped dent today as a follow up to seeing her about two weeks ago because dd had one of those infamous bubbles above a tooth. (letter g, I think for those interested!) She put her on antibiotics (we used arnica and echinacea instead...dd refuses to take antibiotics in any form) and we did seem to notice the site improving. We went in today for a followup procedure and they (I think) bascially drilled a hole in the gum (?) and inserted medicine. I say I think, because as I am trying to question what is going on, dd is hysterical, I am holding her down and when it's over, Ped Dent is out of the room so fast, I can't seem to ask any reasonable questions. Has anyone had any experience with this? She told me to wipe the site with peroxide/H2O and that it should be fine. I have lost nearly all faith in this ped dent and would like to hear from anyone whose child had something like this done. This tooth has been capped for about a year, does that make any difference in what they choose to do? Do any of your ped dentists seem more slaves to their schedules than actual treatment of their little patients? Is that just the way it is out there? Any info on any of this is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
post #47 of 79
I just had root anal yesturday and the Dentist gave me a prescription for antibiotics. She said I needed to take them that there was bacteria in my gums and she has no way of knowing if she got it all out.

I dont take antibotics, unless ABSOLUTELY neccessary, I think I have had them once in the past 12 years. I think I will wait and see. But, what do I look for? When should I worry? Is there anything herbal or homeopathic I can take to help reduce the chances?

post #48 of 79
I just had root anal yesturday and the Dentist gave me a prescription for antibiotics. She said I needed to take them that there was bacteria in my gums and she has no way of knowing if she got it all out.

I dont take antibotics, unless ABSOLUTELY neccessary, I think I have had them once in the past 12 years. I think I will wait and see. But, what do I look for? When should I worry? Is there anything herbal or homeopathic I can take to help reduce the chances?

post #49 of 79


I searched the archives and couldn't find anything.
Problem: My dd keeps getting abcesses!!! When she was two yo she had major surgery- two teeth pulled and all the rest capped, or rebuilt and capped. Nerve damage also repaired.
Every time she gets an abcess the dentist pulled the tooth, stabbed the abcess with needle and sucked out the puss. Extremely painful! The last time I requested that the tooth not be pulled and dentist complied, but still had to do the needle thing.

It's been over a year now. Yesterday dd tells me she has another one. This time it is at the root of a permanant tooth that is growing in. Ahhh! I am broke and no longer live in the city, so it will be a major problem getting there.

Question: is there some type of homeopathic remedy and something we can do for prevention?
I asked the dentist and she said no to both questions, but I know hospitals have a policy of not allowing their Dr.s to respond to such inquiries.
Any help would be appreciated
post #50 of 79

I asked to have my 6 yo's tooth extracted

Hi. I'm new here and very impressed with all the information on these boards!! I have this pressing and worrisome dental question. This post is long and rambly. I'd appreciate any feedback from anyone who makes it through the whole thing!!

I used to take a laid back approach with going to the dentist and dental treatment. But I keep hearing some real dental horror stories. We found a dentist that we liked and I trusted and we were working on getting there regualarly. But he's really too sick now to see patients and so we just went to a new dentist. The old one didn't ever even take X-rays - he said he could see all he needed to just by looking. that was a breath of fresh air to me becuase I had just been kicked out of a dentist ofice because I said "no Xrays today, please, just a cleaning". Now I'm thinking the X-rays can be useful at times. My thoughts about health care in general keep evolving. But it seems like dental care can be really tricky. I've got a mouthful of mercury and those fillings are breaking down. The use of mercury was (and still is) common practice. But it seems harmful.

I've read and heard about root canal horror stories and I've experienced it my self. I've had a root canal done and the tooth still hurts slightly years later. Could it still have infection? Maybe, I don't know.

But my pressing question right now is for my 6 y/o. He has a really bad cavity. The dentist said it was in a molar. I thought the molars were way in the back - this one is kind of in the middle. Anyway, he said we could do a root canal of pull it - my choice. I said I was concerned about root canals, and he said OK we'll pull it. He wants my son to go to an orthodontist to have a spacer tooth put in and he said it would be cemented to his back molars on both sides - with some kind of wire running under his tongue or something. After reading the archives, it seems as though maybe a root canal would be a better option. This is a baby tooth. The dentist said it should come out in a few years - I think he said 4 years or so. So he'll have to live with the choice for 4 years. My son is very sensitive and I worry now that the fake tooth and wires will bother him. the dentist said kids get used to it quickly. But maybe root canal is our best option. He said both procedures were big procedures.

Any words of wisdom, or suggestions where I can go to learn more - quickly? M<y son's next appointment it Tuesday


post #51 of 79
Hi Linda! Welcome to the boards!

Yes! Go quickly to the Dental Archives (at the top of the title page). You'll see a two page list of topics (mercury fillings, root canal vs extraction, etc) that have been discussed in the past on the dental boards. I recently scooped them all up by subject and put them up there, I hope it helps!

Good luck on Tuesday!
post #52 of 79
We had this problem with my 7 year old over a year ago. We opted to pull the tooth and use a space maintainer. It's just a metal piece that's glued to the tooth behind the one pulled. Come to find out it wasn't doing any good though because my daughter's teeth are so screwed up so the dentist removed it last week. Where it was a baby tooth I opted to pull it because it's harder to go through a root canal and it's not a needed tooth since the adult will replace it.
post #53 of 79

Urgent questions re crown, pulpectomy

I have never posted anywhere before, so forgive me if I don't get this right. But I don't know where else to turn. I have an appointment on Thursday morning for my 3 1/2 year old son to have one tooth crowned. I have been reading here all night (in the Dental Archives) and I feel like I will cancel the appointment in the morning and try to get feedback from some of you.
I first took ds to a dentist when he was less than 2 yrs and dentist found a pin prick cavity. He sent me to a pediatric dentist. I went to both pediatric groups in my community and they wanted to fill at next appointment using a restraining board and they blamed my night nursing. I could not use that device. So I found a more open pediatric dentist in a community about an hour away. We have been going to him since my ds was 2 yrs. He has seen us every 3-4 months and just does a cleaning and applies floride to the cavities (it is now the front 4). The hope was to get my ds more comfortable, so that he might be able to tolerate getting a filling. But when my ds turned 3 yrs the dentist recommended GA and crowning all four teeth. He said that there was now too much decay to do fillings. (The one tooth does seem about half the size it used to be altho it's still white and the other 3 look fine to me but dentist says the are decayed behind). I set the appointment for May but couldn't do it. I am not comfortable having ds put under. So this dentist has agreed to try to do just the worst tooth first. If my ds will cooperate. That is what is planned for Thursday. But now I realize I'm still not feeling good about this. I don't know what to do. I understand from what I've been reading that no treatment is not the answer either.
The dentist is having us give ds vistaril the night before and then first thing in morning before bringing him in. Is this ok? My ds has never had any medication other then Tylenol a couple of times. Then I think he may give him more at office? and also nitrous oxide and something like novicane, I think?. He plans to do a pulpectomy and put on a plastic crown.
He has never taken an xray, which was ok by me, but now after reading the threads I wonder how he knows that ds needs a pulpectomy. That seems more serious than I thought. Is it? What's this about asking for ferric sulfate as the pulp sealer? And is a plastic crown ok? Are there more questions I should be asking?
Sorry for the long post. I just feel so overwhelmed tonight. Bad about canceling the appointment. But not prepared. Please help!
post #54 of 79

swollen, bleeding gum between teeth?

After months with no dental visits I just noticed all this gum swelling between my dd's two teeth. It's bleeding, also. Any ideas what we're dealing with? Is this an infection? Any thoughts on whether this is a wait and see or a rush to the dent? tks for any help! Just wanted to add that the swelling starts at the gumline and goes down towards the bottom of the teeth, if that helps at all!
post #55 of 79
Sounds like your dentist waited a bit too long . And also like he really may need the pulpectomy ~ when half the tooth is gone, I wouldn't be surprised if the decay reaches into the pulp.

From what I've read on these boards (A LOT!) I have the impression that for four teeth you may really want to consider GA. My dd had one front tooth filled and crowned with composite (similar to plastic I guess) and that took about 20 minutes. It was also decayed in the back, and our ped dentist said he couln'd tell whether it needed a pulpectomy till he had it drilled out. I don't know how your dentist would be able to tell ahead of time ~ you may want to ask about that. My dd didn't get a pulpectomy. She did get Versed, an oral sedative, which definitely made it (a bit) easier on all of us (it was her first digression from Tylenol/Ibuprofen, too, and boy did it give her a taste for drugs ).

it seems like your son would be "in the chair" for at least an hour, even with just one pulpectomy, and that's an awful long time for a little kid. If I were in your shoes, I'd probably consider GA. If my dd has to go again, with more than 1 cavity, I'd probably go for GA. Good luck, let us know what you decide and how it goes. And welcome to the boards :
post #56 of 79
Hi, I just wanted to give an update so that no one has to respond to the first post. (Not that it looks like anyone was going to anyway! ) I decided after using tea tree oil and a wait and see approach for a few days to go ahead and take her in to the dent. They said it was an abcess and that it was probably fractured, although they couldn't seem to give me a definitive answer on this and said that an x-ray could be inconclusive as well. (Anyone know if that is true?) ANYWAY, since this was a tooth that they had done a pulpotomy on several months ago, they felt our only option was to pull the tooth. Since the oral surgeon happened to be there today and seemed open to working with a 3 yr old, I finally acquiesced (after asking him a million questions) and let them take the tooth. Now the doubting begins for me...did I do the right thing? Should I have waited? Why does this keep happening? What are we doing wrong? Blah, Blah, Blah! My only comfort was that dd seemed pretty calm and after they put the numbing gel on she started to tell me how much better it felt. I have to (and want to) believe that she was in a fair amount of discomfort, and the gel helped. I've given her some arnica and she's sleeping now. She is now missing both her teeth on either side of her front two. I just want to cry and I think my husband is ready to do the same. I feel very exhausted by all this and really down today. We have been working so hard to keep all this at bay, and really thought we had made some progress, yet it seems like clockwork we are back every few months with a new problem. I am starting to wonder if I should have just let them put her under the very first time we saw a problem. Ahh well, thanks for letting me get all this off my chest. We work so hard to be good protectors and consumers for our children, but it is all very challenging some times when it weighs this heavily on your shoulders, isn't it? If anyone's out there, thanks for listening.
post #57 of 79
thanks for your reply. i was starting to feel bad that no one had replied and wondering why my envelope has a black dot on it.

I did cancel the appointment for last Thursday and have rescheduled for the middle of August. But I just don't know if I can get comfortable with GA. I think I'd like to start with the one crown as a first step. The dentist has said that the whole procedure should take about 20 minutes.

But I am still concerned about the polpectomy. The dentist had recommended this on all 4 teeth and the other 3 do not show any sign of decay at all (even tho I believe that there is some on the back side of teeth). But I wonder if this dentist just does the polpectomy to be conservative. And is that ok?

Did your dd have a numbing shot also, or just the oral sedative?

And has anyone had experience with Vistaril as an oral sedative?

post #58 of 79

the neccesity of spacers

Hi, I'm new here, and didn't see this info in the archives (so if it is there can someone please direct me. I have a 4 1/2 yr old who has undergone dental surgery in the hospital last January (2002) and also had 2 teeth extracted. The dentist now wants to fit him for spacers. Can someone explain what the function is and if they are neccessary? (He talked to me about it but I was distracted by my busy baby during the conversation).
thank you in advance,
post #59 of 79
Thread Starter 
I don't know how many dentists are willing to do this, but...when my son had one of his molars (second to back) extracted at age 5, rather than put in a spacer right away, his dentist gave me a little tool to use to measure the space where the tooth was missing. Then only if the space there began to change would he put in a spacer. (Ds had already been through so much dental work at this point so it was nice to not go through the ordeal of putting in the spacer since it involves a crown on the tooth behind it.)

It's now been a year, and his 6yr molars have come in, and so far no change in space...I have to remember to keep measuring though!
post #60 of 79


I'll be sure to talk to our dentist about this option. I think it would be so much better, like your child mine has been through so much work already we're beginning to become regulars!
Thanks again-
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