I’m really worried something is seriously wrong. I recently had a friend die from an infection that grew out of control and I want to be careful not to allow myself to get into the same situation. I’ll admit up front I don’t like dentists and haven’t been to one in a few years. So, I wasn’t extraordinarily surprised when my molar started hurting. I called an emergency dentist and he told me to come on in. When I got there he said my molar and two other teeth need to be extracted. I was disappointed but realized I’d caused the problem. So, I agreed to the extractions. He was willing to do them right at that moment. Though scared, I did want to just get it over with. The procedure took a bit, but I got through it. When it was done, they never mentioned anything went wrong. I went home thinking outside of feeling like a Hillbilly with my missing teeth, everything should be okay from here. Then my nose started making these “popping” sounds when I breathe. I called the office and they said to take a decongestant, never hinting at a problem. The pain grew worse and I developed a fever. I called them back asking to come in and have them look at it. They told me not to come in and they’d just call me in an antibiotic. I took that but still continued getting worse. I was two weeks out from the procedure and started having discharge. The fever is still there too. This time I didn’t give them a choice and just told them I was on my way in, not wanting to risk a spreading infection. It wasn’t until I was in the chair again that they said they’d perforated my sinus during the extraction. They went in and pulled out bone fragments. I couldn’t believe it. They said that should take care of the problem and sent me home with a refill on the antibiotic. It’s five days later and nothing has improved. What do I do? Am I in danger?
Wow! What a disaster. This emergency dentist has totally blown this situation. In the first place, they should have let you know immediately when your sinus was perforated. Not only is it your body, but you need to know what the protocol for healing is. For instance, in your case, it would be dangerous to blow your nose normally at this point. It needs to be treated gently.
That being said, I wouldn’t panic, though it does need to be dealt with promptly. You’re right that infections can’t be left untreated and it sounds to me like you’re on the wrong antibiotic. Truthfully, you should have been feeling better after just two days on an antibiotic. If you don’t, something’s wrong.
You may need to see an ENT at this point. Tell them exactly what you told me and they should get you in right away. At the very least, get your primary care physician to give you the right antibiotic. Try to find an emergency ENT. Most of these will heal on their own, but if it doesn’t, you may need surgery.
I’d also like to address your aversion to dentists. First, don’t feel guilty about that. Many people feel exactly the same way. Though, because it’s causing you to lose teeth I want to see if we can’t help give you a positive experience at the dentist (especially after this last one!). I’d like you to consider trying dental sedation. It will completely give you a much more pleasant experience at the dentist. In addition to making your dental care easier it will allow you to have more work done at each visit.
Additionally, you’ll need to look at tooth replacement options. Ideally, you’d want dental implants. But, if you haven’t been to the dentist in a while, you may have some gum disease that needs to be dealt with first. IF you don’t, you could lose all your teeth.
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