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Rotten teeth: see possible treatments

Rotten teeth: see possible treatments

Rotten teeth are the most common way patients refer to damaged teeth. The big problem is the difficulty people have to actually identify when a tooth is really rotten!

But what is a rotten tooth?

A rotten tooth is one that presents problems that are not possible to be or that the solution would be something with very short durability, such as the following cases:

  • Teeth with large bone loss, where there is no longer support to keep it firm during chewing
  • Teeth in which caries has reached root level and can not be used to support a crown (tooth)
  • Teeth with extensive restorations or prosthetic works that fracture in a place where the dentist no longer has access to retrieve it.

Based on this, the patient should know that only the professional can know when a tooth is even rotten or not.

It is very common in the office, the patient arrives saying that the teeth are rotten, that he wants to extract and when I look, the tooth does present problems, but still can be fully recovered. In this situation, we are faced with two types of patients, those who are happy not to lose a tooth and those who do not accept this argument, because they really want to extract and do any other type of treatment, especially with dental implants. that I do not remove a tooth that can still be treated, I try to explain that our tooth is always better than any kind of work, but it is common for the patient not to return, looking for a professional to do what he thinks is right. The opposite is also true, often the patient arrives with the totally rotten tooth, as they themselves say and do not want to remove it from the mouth at all, arguing that it is a tooth "his" and do not want to lose, which is a natural tooth Almost the same arguments that I use in the case quoted above, when the tooth can still be treated.

Possible Treatments for a Rotten Tooth

To try to inform the possibilities of treatment, let's divide what would be teeth that still support one treatment and teeth that would not withstand or would only last for a very short period of time.

Teeth with potential for treatment

Teeth with extensive caries, but after removal of the damaged part of the tooth, on sufficient tooth structure so that one of the works listed below can be done:


  • is the simplest work, the tooth is redone with a resin, where we complete the shape and anatomy, allowing it to have the original function again Restoration inlay / onlay:
  • are aesthetic restorations, made of resin or ceramic, with and without recoating of the cusps of the teeth. Currently we have lithium disilicate, more resistant to fracture than porcelain and with a much higher adhesion power, and can be placed on teeth with very little structure, ie, teeth that would have been lost a few years ago. be kept in the mouth Crowns:
  • the part that appears in the smile, is the crown of the tooth. The crowns are a copy of the natural tooth and can be made in ceramic (porcelain), lithium disilicate or zirconia. The crowns now have a perfect aesthetic, being identical to the other Crowns with core:
  • when a tooth remains only the root, but it has a good structure, we make a pin that will be trapped inside this root and on this pin will be put on the crown. And you may ask, "Why should I do an excellent job on a rotten tooth?". See that there are several options to keep a tooth in the mouth and it has to be very bad for it to be removed. Of course, the more procedures needed to maintain this tooth and the more sophisticated the material, the greater the cost. However, I always point out that recovery with a good job will be less costly than treatment with a material that is not appropriate for the case and that will present problems.It is very common for the patient to report that he has already spent a fortune on a particular tooth, which treated the canal and restoration, then the tooth broke and made a crown, after some time the crown broke and a pin was made with a new crown on top and finally the same broke and is now lost. Yes, this is very common, but unlikely to happen if the first time this tooth receives a treatment, a good planning is done about what the ideal job would be and he accepts that it may be until he spends more at a first moment, but that this will represent a future economy, both financially and at the time of consultation at the dentist and especially in health.

Teeth without conditions to be maintained

These must be extracted and in the location of this tooth there are two possibilities:

Installation of a dental implant and on this implant a crown of the same materials mentioned in the previous topic

Wear of the neighboring teeth to the lost and placement of a fixed bridge, work that is increasingly losing space within Dentistry, but still very effective, with great results and if well indicated. Often the patient loses a tooth, the neighboring teeth are also bad, the region of the extracted tooth does not have enough bone, being necessary bone graft, implant and crown. In these cases, often with a fixed bridge work is possible to solve the three teeth at once, with great result.

  • How to prevent a tooth from becoming rotten
  • It seems very logical, but this is a of the most common questions that exist. It is very simple, just a good oral hygiene, with careful use of the brush, which must be changed regularly; I usually say that should be part of the monthly shopping list, the dental floss and a care with the sugar intake. Regular consultation with the dentist for professional evaluation and prevention. This is always the most effective and economical way to maintain oral health.

Another important point is that dentistry has evolved a lot and most of the time, if the first problem in the tooth is performed the necessary treatment, it is very likely that tooth for a long time in the mouth. I think we could say that he has the same chance to continue in the mouth the same period as a tooth that did not present any problem.

What happens is that, often, the patient wants something simpler for the solution of that problem and unfortunately the dentist may end up giving up and performing gigantic restorations on poorly structured teeth or placing teeth on roots that will not withstand the bite. In these cases, we quit science and start counting on luck. It may be that it stays, it might not be!

But one thing I can guarantee, when the problem comes back, is going to be a much more difficult and costly solution. So I think it is very important that during your consultation, ask the pros and cons of the proposed treatments.

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