I have two teeth that I am having extracted and then replaced with dental implants. For both teeth, he will do the extraction, bone grafting, a temp replacement, the implants, and implant crowns for a total of $9,800.00. Thus far, I have had the extractions and bone grafting done on both teeth. I am dealing with the temporary replacements now and am beginning to lose confidence in my dentist. He provided two Maryland Bridges for my tooth replacements three weeks ago, since then, they have fallen out four different times. I am assuming this is not normal. Here is my concern. If he cannot handle the temporary replacement, should I be concerned about the implant procedure and permanent teeth? Would it be wiser for me to switch dentists? Is that dangerous in the middle of the procedure? I’m paying a lot of money and would like to know that I am in competent hands.
I see two troubling aspects of your case. The first is that your dentist has little successful experience with a Maryland Bridge, which tells me he doesn’t understand cosmetic bonding techniques. A Maryland Bridge uses two metal or ceramic wings attached to a false tooth. Both the wings and the back of the teeth are etched and a cosmetic bonding placed between the two holds it all together. When it comes off prematurely, that means there is a flaw in the technique, the design of the materials themselves, or both. Your dentist seems unaware of the cause of the failure, which is why it keeps failing. This tells me he has little experience in this area.
The second aspect is the fact that he is using a Maryland Bridge to begin with. Generally, if you do a lot of dental implants, you want a reliable, inexpensive temporary replacement that makes no permanent changes to the surrounding teeth. A Maryland Bridge does not fit that bill. That tells me he also has little experience in implant dentistry. This is especially dangerous for you. Implant dentistry is one of the most advanced procedures there are. If a dentist messes up a dental crown, they just give the patient a new crown. If, however, a dentist messes up a dental implant, they can do serious, permanent damage to their patient’s jaw. So, yes, I think you need to switch dentists, and the sooner the better.
The good news is your dentist is ethically bound to cooperate with the new dentist and provide him or her with all the diagnostics and notes on your treatment to date.
Your new dentist will probably provide you with dental flippers for your temporary tooth replacements. This should go much easier for you.
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