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Need dental advice please - should I go private?

(13 Posts)
AncientCrone Mon 06-May-13 17:30:37

I have a filling. It's a really big deep one sad so by the time the dentist finished drilling it out, there was only a really thin veneer of actual tooth left. She then filled it, and a couple of days after that half the actual tooth that remained cracked off (luckily mainly on the inside so not too visible). So I have a big chunk of metal in place of a tooth and a bit of tooth left on the outside.

I had a check up on Friday and she said that as there's so little tooth left, best thing would probably be a crown. As there's basically no tooth left, she'll have to drill out the root and put in a post to attach the crown to. It will take an hour appointment to do the post bit and then another two appointments to do the crown. First appointment is in July.

This would all be fine except that the filling fell out on Friday evening. I managed to wedge it back in and have been eating really gingerly all weekend. I'm terrified it's going to come out again as I basically have no tooth left sad and I think if it comes out the last shard of tooth will crack and I'll have a gap sad

I'm going to call my dentist in the morning to see whether we can start treatment any earlier, but if not then will going private speed things up? I just don't think I can hang on until July.

Thanks for reading this very long and boring post blush

NotSpartacus Mon 06-May-13 17:39:32

Going private will be quicker yes - when I needed a crown the whole thing took about two weeks. But it was very expensive (almost £800 and I didn't have a root canal (which possibly you are having? I don't know enough about dentistry to tell)).
You could try to find another nhs dentist, or one who takes private work on. They seem to be cheaper than 100% private dentists.
I do think you need this seen to asap, as I reckon the longer you wait the more the remaining tooth might get damaged.

AncientCrone Mon 06-May-13 17:44:19

Thanks. Yikes at £800! My friend had one and hers was £300 but she said she thought it was quite an expensive dentist (we're in the NW if that makes a difference). Current (NHS) dentist has told me that what I need will cost £49 for the root bit and £214 for the crown (NHS prices).

Perhaps going private isn't an option then sad How do you even find a private dentist? Do you get quotes? confused

I do need to get it sorted, I can't even clean it properly atm sad

NotSpartacus Mon 06-May-13 19:10:40

Ok, well my £800 was in London (in the city to boot) with a dentist who only does private work, so I was kind of asking for trouble there!
My private dentist was recommended to me, so you might try asking people locally. Or your dentist may do some private work which may speed things up if she can see you as a private patient or she might know someone decent who does. Actually, if you start a thread on here asking for recommendations in your area you might get a couple of names.
When you do, ring them and ask how much a root canal and crown normally is. Then you can get an idea of whether private is something you want to do.

Footle Mon 06-May-13 20:02:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsMorton Mon 06-May-13 20:43:51

NHS treatment is cumulative so if the root bit costs £49, the crown should cost £214 minus £49.
The majority of NHS dentists do NHS an private work, eg NHS appointments available 1000-1500 and private work from 0800-1000 and 1000 to 1800. Ask your dentist, if they don't do NHS the they will be able to recommend someone.

gingeroots Mon 06-May-13 21:03:19

You can't possibly wait until July . I'm sure your dentist will fit you in before then . If not can you find another ?

I'm just a teeny bit unimpressed that she didn't go for a crown in the first place . It must have been pretty obvious that leaving such a thin shell of tooth wouldn't work ?

Have you been with this dentist for long ?

AncientCrone Mon 06-May-13 22:46:04

I'll call my current dentist first, I'm just worried I won't count for getting my July appointment bumped after I called the OOH dentist on Saturday and was told that I didn't qualify for emergency treatment (apparently I had to be in "excruciating pain", which tickles me for some reason).

Thanks MrsM that's good to know. Have been looking at some private dentists nearby and they all seem very expensive sad

gingeroots I've been with her since we moved here, so a couple of years. Tbh I am a bit hmm because from my pov there was absolutely nothing wrong with my tooth until she started fiddling with it but she said that an x-ray showed decay which turned out to be extensive once she started drilling. The whole experience has been horrible though sad

gingeroots Tue 07-May-13 08:46:20

AC no no no ,why should phoning the OOH and being assessed as not urgent for OOH mean you cant have an appointment b4 July ?

I can't help thinking that maybe you need a change of dentist . Are there no other NHS dentists near you who could help ?

Long shot but might there be one listed here ?

Or even ask on trusty MN in the chat section ( lots of traffic ) if anyone knows a NHS dentist near you ?

And .... you deserve better you know .

PS Did you know that you can go to another dentist for a second opinion ?
I thought I'd have to pay through the nose for this but found that it's available on the NHS for about £ 20 as a consultation .

MrsMorton Tue 07-May-13 11:19:15

You can see as many dentists as you like, the NHS fee for a consultation/check up/examination is £18 in England.

AncientCrone Tue 07-May-13 14:08:43

Thanks smile

I just thought if the OOH dentist didn't think it was an emergency then maybe my current dentist wouldn't either, but I called this morning and they're seeing me on Thurs morning smile So dreading it but at least it will all be over soon (touch wood).

Isn't it very hard to find an NHS dentist? I kept my dentist up north for years and years when I moved down south because I was told it was so hard to find an NHS dentist!

MrsMorton Tue 07-May-13 16:49:45

It can be tough but believe it or not, lots of dentists want NHS contracts, there just aren't enough to go round. I posted a government petition on here recently but despite hundreds of threads complaining about the lack of NHS dentists, only about six people signed it. The quantity of NHS dentistry is regulated by your PCT. There can't be more, or less provision than they pay for or dentists face quite severe penalties.

AncientCrone Sat 11-May-13 00:13:26

I'm sure that's true, I'm guessing for many it's a calling like any other caring profession sad I've never really understood why it isn't free for all like medical treatment.

In other news, I now have a temporary filling, still waiting for root filling in July and keeping my fingers crossed for a cancellation in the meantime. I looked a couple of local private dentists and what I need doing seems to be spectacularly expensive sad

Note to self: eat fewer sweets blush

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