Hate my denture–Can’t afford implants

I really don’t like my dentures. It makes chewing my food extrememly unpleasant.  The problem is I cannot afford dental implants. Is there anything that can make the chewing easier?

Wallace G.

Wallace,

Even with the best fitting dentures, your chewing capacity drops about 50%. I know dental implants can be expensive. There are ways to get more affordable dental implants.

The cost is proportional to how many implants you get.  One solution would be to just get two implants and get snap-on dentures.  That would help stabilize them.

Additionally, you would be able to add new implants as your budget allows.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentist Dr. John Theriot.

Can children do sedation?

I didn’t realize that letting my son sleep with an apple juice bottle would cause so many problems. Now he’s got lots of dental issues and my dentist wants to take care of it all at once using sedation.  Is that safe for children?

Brooke – Sacramento, CA

Brooke,

First, don’t feel too guilty. A lot of parents don’t realize that letting a child sleep with a bottle will ruin their teeth. It is not a reflection of your parenting.

Regarding the procedure, let me put your mind at ease.  Dental sedation is perfectly safe for children.  The sedation used for children in medical procedures is much stronger and it is safe for use as well.

If you’re concerned, you can go to a dentist that is DOCS certified. Dr. Theriot is DOCS certified and it gave him extra training in handling sedation as well as any contingencies that can come up in the procedure.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette LA dentist Dr. John Theriot.

Emergency dentistry and bulimia

I have bulimia. It’s destroying my teeth. I know I need to see a dentist, but if I go to my family dentist they’ll tell my mom. If I go see an emergency dentist, I can give a fake name.  Will they fix my teeth?

A. – Georgia

Dear A.,

On an emergency dental visit, they generally just get you out of pain and then schedule a follow up visit for what the problem is.  What you’re needing is serious work done on your teeth.  You could go to a different dentist than your family dentist and use a fake name. But, I’m curious. If you’re worried they’ll tell your mom, it’s likely you’re a minor. Though, I don’t know that for sure. If so, how will you pay for these extended treatments?

My next question is what makes you so certain that your dentist will tell your mom?  Is it that you know this dentist well enough to know he’ll do that, or is it just something you’re assuming?

Most dentists want to help their patients.  He will know your teeth need help and he’ll want to do anything to make sure you get the care for them that you need. Dentists want to protect their patients privacy.

I have a suggestion. Why don’t you call your dentist and ask him if he’s willing to talk to you in confidence.  Get that assurance up front.  Have him look at your teeth and tell you what you’ll need to do to protect your teeth. It’s likely, he can give your parents a legitimate, honest assesment of your teeth without mentioning the bulimia.

I will say, even if he fixes the immediate problem, without dealing with the bulimia itself, you’ll end up in the same place (or likely worse one) than you are now.

Talk to a school counselor or other trusted adult to see if you can get help.  You’ll find, if you confide in your parents, though they’ll be terrified by what you tell them and could possibly overreact at first (out of fear and love), all they’ll want to do is help. They’ll get their senses together and do everything in their power to get you the help you’d need. At least, that’s what I’d do for my children.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentist Dr. John Theriot.