I have been having a LOT of dental work done in order to get my mouth back on track. The most recent has been two root canal treatments. I also have an impacted wisdom tooth. My dentist wants to remove it. I am fine with that, but would like him to remove the tooth near it that had the root canal treatment. This tooth still has pain and I think the root canal treatment failed. He is refusing, saying that the tooth is not infected. I believe he just doesn’t want to admit his mistake so I am holding off on the wisdom tooth until he agrees to do both. Do you have any advice about the pain?
If I understand you correctly, you think the reason your dentist does not want to extract the tooth that had the root canal treatment is that you think he does not want to admit the root canal failed. Following that thought through means you think your dentist would put your health and life at risk in order to not look bad. If you truly believe that, you need to switch dentists right away. Why would you want to stay with such a dentist? Fortunately, I do not believe that is what is happening.
It is fairly common for a root canal treatment to fail even when a dentist does everything right. There is no incentive for him to hide a failed root canal treatment. On the contrary, there is more incentive for him to say it failed because that means he can make more money either by doing a root canal re-treatment or a tooth extraction.
With an extraction, which is what you want, he could make even more money because now you will need a tooth replacement. I can only think of one reason why he would not want to extract the tooth and that is if it is not infected. You would not want to extract a healthy tooth.
About this wisdom tooth. You are putting yourself in danger by not getting your infected wisdom tooth extracted. That infection will continue to spread. Think about how close your jaw is to your heart, lungs, and brain. If the infection reaches there, you will go from a dental infection to a life-threatening one. You can see why infected teeth are considered dental emergencies. Please, for your own sake get that tooth extracted.
If you still want the healthy tooth extracted, I am sure you can find a dentist with fewer ethics that your current dentist has who will be willing to extract it. Just make sure you replace it too. Otherwise, your adjacent teeth will shift and tip into the empty space which could lead to painful TMJ Disorder. My suggestion is that you replace it with a dental implant. These are the closest to having a healthy natural tooth again.
This blog is brought to you by Midtown, Manhattan Dentist Dr. Marianna Farber.