A local dentist advertised a discount on gold teeth crowns. In March, I went to the office for a consultation and found I could save $400 over the price quotes I had from other dentists. In mid-August, I got the crown. After getting the crown, I felt some normal sensitivity, but the sensitivity increased, and I got a rash on my gums. When I returned to the dentist, he said he needed to remove the crown and check my tooth. After an exam and x-ray, the dentist said I needed root canal treatment.
I have three friends who are dental hygienists, and I texted all of them about the problem and asked why this would happen. My friend Leigh told me to ask the dentist for a copy of the alloy certificate. When I called the dental office, the dental receptionist took a message for me, and the dentist called me back. He hesitated and asked me what I knew about an alloy certificate. Then I mentioned my patient rights, and someone faxed a copy of the alloy certificate the next day. I thought I was misreading the certificate, so I texted Leigh a picture of it, and she confirmed that the crown is only 4% gold.
I called the dental office and left a message for the dentist. I said some unkind things and told him that although I would not return to the office, he could count on hearing from my attorney. I do not have an attorney, but I thought that might get him anxious, so I said it. But I am more concerned about my tooth. I probably really need a root canal. Now I must find a new dentist, and my friend Leigh recommended hers, but it’s two hours away. How can I trust another dentist? If the tooth is too far gone, might a dentist recommend an implant? I would like to know what to expect because my trust level is low. Thanks for your help. Salvador
We are sorry to hear about your experience in getting a crown made of only percent gold. And we are concerned about the ethics of the dentist who placed the crown. Although you do not have an attorney, you should consider getting a refund and having the dentist pay for whatever care you need to restore your oral health and the tooth. If your dentist is unwilling to refund you and pay for the care you need to restore the tooth, you can threaten to report the issue to the state dental board or get a medical malpractice attorney.
Advantages of Gold Crowns
Gold is a good metal for crowns for two reasons:
- It will not rust
- It is soft, and a dentist can fit it precisely and prevent further tooth decay.
What Percentage of Gold Should Be in a Gold Crown?
A gold, or high-noble, crown must contain at least 60 percent gold, but your crown is only four percent gold. And it seems that other metals in your crown might have provoked a reaction and infection.
What Are Your Treatment Options?
A dentist will need to examine your gums and tooth to determine the extent of the infection. Antibiotics, repeat root canal treatment, and a new crown might be enough to restore your tooth. A dental implant is an option but not necessary if a dentist can save your tooth.
How to Find a New Dentist
If you are unsure about which dentist you can trust, schedule consultations with a least two advanced cosmetic dentists with post-graduate training. Compare your options and read patient reviews to increase your confidence in a dentist.
Best wishes for a smooth resolution.
Cosmetic dentist Mohamed Imam, DDS of San Antonio, sponsors this post.