I’ve been holding off on going to the dentist because I’m afraid dental implants are my only option and I already know I can’t handle all that treatment. About a month ago, I was playing softball and I took a spill. I broke two lower teeth, sort of near the front, but the teeth broke off almost all the way at my gums. I have no idea how it doesn’t hurt, but I really don’t feel anything unless I eat something I shouldn’t on that side. I’m tempted to just leave well enough alone, since I’m not up for lengthy appointments that I’d need to endure for dental implants and it doesn’t hurt, but I just thought I’d check in and see what other options are available.
Thanks in advance for the help,
Ron in Arizona
There is a myriad of options in your case, and it’s probably not a good idea to wait too long. It’s surprising that you’re not in pain, but even if the nerves were dead before your accident, you’re still at a very high risk of developing an infection. If there isn’t enough tooth left to place porcelain crowns on the teeth, the root and remaining tooth structure should be removed very soon.
As far as replacement options go, you could probably have a dental bridge done there. Though they usually only replace a single tooth, they can replace two adjacent ones as well. You could also consider a partial denture.
You didn’t really get into why dental implants put you off. They’re generally the best choice because they help slow the bone loss that naturally occurs when you’re missing a tooth, plus they are strong and durable. The amount of time spent in the chair per visit is on par with the amount of time you might spend for a crown, though the process, itself, is lengthier. If anxiety is stopping you from getting dental implants, you may want to look for an office that does sedation dentistry as well, so you can be sure you’ll stay comfortable and relaxed throughout the procedure.
Your best bet right now is to get in for an exam, though, before those teeth have a chance to flare up. You can talk to the dentist about which options are right for you while you’re in. It’s possible, though not likely based on your description, that you can still have crowns done. If you still won’t consider dental implants, a bridge or partial denture are your next best options.