Whoops, there goes another packet of $$

No we didn’t slide on the ice, I went to the dentist for my six-month checkup…all $235 (X-rays included) of it. David took me to lunch afterward,

I needed cheering up.  I have some new decay under a gold crown on the right side of my jaw (Dr. Wei, the endodontist saved this tooth and crown when he removed the dead nerve via root canal a few years ago).  And, I may have an abscess on the left side of my jaw.

At least it looks like an abscess.  Could be another dead tooth requiring yet another root canal and crown. Dr. Levine banged on my teeth and I didn’t wince so the teeth in question are probably dead.

My oral surgeon, Dr. C. removed an abscess from the right side of my jaw a couple of years ago, which required outpatient surgery (with anesthesia) at our local hospital.  He had it biopsied and it was cancer free.

Don’t know which prospect is more chilling…another abscess with a possible complication, or the need for a second root canal and crown.  Both will be expensive, although my insurance would cover most of the cost of the first.

The thought of an abscess is scary, however.  Dr. L knew I was upset, and looked at me and said, ‘It’s not cancer.” But how could he know this when he has already said Dr. C will do a biopsy of the material he removes from the tooth?


A tooth abscess is a pocket of pus that’s caused by a bacterial infection. The abscess can occur at different regions of the tooth for different reasons. A periapical (per-e-AP-ih-kul) abscess occurs at the tip of the root, whereas a periodontal (per-e-o-DON-tul) abscess occurs in the gums next to a tooth root. The information here refers specifically to periapical abscesses.

A periapical tooth abscess usually occurs as a result of an untreated dental cavity, injury or prior dental work.

Dentists will treat a tooth abscess by draining it and getting rid of the infection. They may be able to save your tooth with a root canal treatment, but in some instances it may need to be pulled. Leaving a tooth abscess untreated can lead to serious, even life-threatening, complications.

 If I have an abscess, it’s the periapical kind, caused by prior dental work.


The hygienist gave me 2,000 mg of Amoxycillan this morning. She said, “For two years following joint replacement surgery, you should take an antibiotic before a dental procedure (including cleaning).” The antibiotic neutralizes any bacteria that enters your blood stream during a procedure that could settle in the surgical site and cause serious problems. Just thought I would pass that along.

I called my GP when I got home, and he called in the prescription for Amoxycillan for future dental visits.

15 thoughts on “Whoops, there goes another packet of $$

  1. I did that. I got to the dentist and discovered, as I lay there with my mouth open that I should have taken an antibiotic. I didn’t think it funny. So very sorry about the bad day, teeth, and news. I so hope you can get them repaired rapidly. Yes, a day of reading will be good for the soul.


  2. Ouch! And in more ways than one. Sigh. I’m so sorry. I have an appointment next month and I’m always nervous they’re going to tell me something horrible. So far I have a bunch of “watches” on quite a number of teeth. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you, Dianne.


  3. Good luck. I hope that it will turn out alright for you. My periodontist put me on antibiotics when I had gum disease before he did the surgeries I eventually had.


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