Theriot Family Dental

Dental Accidents: Dentist Cut My Tongue

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I have never loved going to the dentist. However, I have not had a horrible experience until my recent appointment. I’d never had a cavity until after my recent pregnancy. I was sick the entire nine months. I ended up needing one dental crown and two fillings by the time I got through the pregnancy and got to the dentist. I’d never really had a cavity before so this was a new experience for me. This is where it all started falling apart. I now understand why people have dental anxiety. After this experience, I’m pretty sure I have it too.

First, he nicked my lip with some type of tool. He didn’t apologize and just said “whoops.” Then, while working on my molar (the tooth that needed the dental crown),  The dental tool slipped and cut the side of my tongue. Even his assistant gasped. Again, no apology.

I called him the next day and told them my tongue hurts quite a bit and all they said is “It will heal.” Do I have anything to worry about with this? Should he give me a discount? One last question. I tried that nitrous oxide thing he offered but it didn’t seem to help. Is that normal?


Dear Melody,

I am sorry for the pain and trouble you experienced in your dental appointment. Obviously, this dentist owes you an apology. A discount would be a bonus. However, it does not look like this dentist cares enough to give either. For the discount, maybe he’s having trouble with his overhead right now and barely making ends meet. The apology, however, would only cost him a nick to his pride.

You could try to push it, but I don’t think it would be worth your time. The damage won’t bring you enough financial compensation for the trouble. I’m going to be blunt and say that I don’t think this is the best dentist to serve your needs. It’s time for a new one. Given the traumatic experience you had, combined with the fact that the nitrous oxide wasn’t helpful tells me that you will be better served with a compassionate sedation dentist. They understand dental trauma and anxiety and can provide you with medication that can relax you so much that you could sleep through your procedure if you wanted to.

One last thing.  Your pregnancy sounded difficult. So you know for your next one, if it happens that you are as sick again (hopefully not!), taking the step of swishing water around your mouth after vomiting will help neutralize the acids and could help prevent some of that decay you experienced this time around.

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