Tag Archives: tooth replacement

Dental Disaster in Mexico

I went to Mexico to have two dental crowns done because it was supposed to be a lot cheaper than having it done in the United States. In two days the first crown fell off and I had to go back. When I did, they told me I needed a root canal before they could replace the crown. I had some doubts about that becuase the tooth wasn’t hurting but they seemed certain it was necessary. Then, it starting have senstivivity to hot and cold. Now I can’t even eat with it. I called them and they told me I needed to come back in. These trips are pretty extensive so I decided to just get a second opinion with a local dentist. He said the tooth did not need a root canal and is actually cracked and needs to be extracted and replaced. My question is, do you think it is reasonable to ask them to apply the cost of the unnecessary root canal they did toward the cost of the extraction and dental implant?


Dear Pam,

What a disaster. While I am sure it is reasonable, I don’t know if you really want them doing that. A dental crown is one of the first things a dentist learns how to do in dental school. He couldn’t even do that right. Then, they gave you an unnecessary root canal treatment. AND, they didn’t even do it right because you should not have had any sensitivity to hot or cold.

Dental implants are one of the most advanced procedures in dentistry. If they can that wrong, it will cause you serious, permanent injury. What if they place it on a nerve? Or you get an infection in your jaw that causes you to lose bone?

In your place, I would bite the bullet and have this done in the United States with a reputable dentist with dental implant training and experience.

I do not know what the laws are in Mexico as far as getting a refund for malpractice, but you can at least try.

Dental tourism is always a gamble. Sometimes it works out. The problem is in the cases where it doesn’t, it is always a disater and in many cases people end up with permanent problems.

This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Dentist Dr. Hillary Peck.

Can You Have a Root Canal Done a Third Time?

I had a root canal treatment done about nine years ago. It had to be re-done a few years after that. Now it is bothering me again. Is it possible to do a root canal treatment a third time?


Dear Mary,

You can re-do a root canal treatment quite a few times. However, you may want to evaluate whether or not that is your best course of action. Root canal treatments are tricky under the best of circumstances. It is estimated that even when a dentist does everything perfectly, there can still be a 15% failure rate. Why is that?

While there is between one and four canals in a tooth, depending on the type of tooth, there are branches that stem off from the main canal. These can take crazy twists and turns. In some cases, they are literally impossible for us to clean out and seal properly with the current technology we have. If a dentist can’t reach all the pulp, there is a significant chance of re-infection.

In addition to that, the chances of a successful re-treatment go down with each attempt. This will be your third treatment. A second option is root canal surgery. However, some patients are not candidates depending on where the nerves lie.

While a good dentist always tries to save a tooth, the honest answer is some teeth are not saveable despite everyone’s best efforts. In that case, the only thing left is to get a tooth extraction and then a replacement.

If that happens, the two best replacements to look at are a dental implant or a dental bridge. Both will serve you well. Just speak with your dentist about your particular circumstances and he or she will help you make the right decision.

Best of Luck!

This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Dentist Dr. Hillary Peck.

She’s PLaying with Fire with This Tooth Infection

I have an impacted wisdom tooth that is slightly infected. My ears hurt as a result. My dentist wants to take it out, which I’m fine with but I want him to take out that tooth and a tooth next to it that had a root canal treatment. He is refusing to take out the tooth with the root canal. I am likely going to wait until he changes his mind because I don’t want to go back and have the second procedure later, as I’m sure I will have to. I’d rather do them both at the same time. Is there any advice you can give me in the meantime?


Dear Pamela,

I haven’t seen your x-rays, but I can’t imagine a dentist leaving an infected tooth in your mouth. He’d get to charge you for two extractions instead of one which could only bring him money. The only reason for him not to do that is because he has integrity. That is something to be thankful for.

My guess is nothing is wrong with the adjacent tooth so he doesn’t want to extract it unnecessarily.

Let’s say he did extract it, though. Unlike your wisdom tooth, the adjacent tooth would need to be replaced. Then, you are talking about needing to get a dental implant, something else your dentist could make money off of.

Don’t Wait on This Extraction

Unless there is something you haven’t mentioned to me, this tooth isn’t infected. If you continue to wait on the wisdom tooth extraction, you are putting yourself in danger.

Dental infections are considered dental emergencies because of their tendency to spread when left untreated. Think about how close your jaw is to your lungs, heart, and brain. You wouldn’t want an infection to end up there.

The fact that your ear is already hurting means it has started to spread. Please don’t put this off any longer.

This blog is brought to you by Phoenix Dentist Dr. Hillary Peck.