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    Thread: Decay below gumline

    1. #1
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      Default Decay below gumline

      I havent been to the dentist in 10 years. Im 60. I fear I have decay below the gumline. What can I expect the dentist to do? Im so scared.

    2. #2
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      Default Re: Decay below gum line

      As far as I can tell its all to do with how much of the tooth above the gum is still left.

      Any repair, be it a filling or a crown needs a solid and hard part of the tooth to hold onto, this is the bit above the gum. Once the decay has gone below the gum its into soft tooth, trying to bond onto this is like trying to stick onto a sponge, it will hold but rather then the bond break it will take a bit of the 'softer' tooth with it. Relying on bonding to the soft bit is very risky, the more 'hard' tooth above the gum the more likely it is to hold on firm. Even a post and crown needs enough hard tooth above the gum to hold onto.

      I have a few teeth that are decayed on one side to the gum line, some have enough hard tooth to make an effective repair, some are too far gone and are going to be removed as it is pointless spending time and money on a repair thats going to come off quickly. To me some teeth look the same but my dentist assures me that some can and some can't be fixed.

      Only a dentist can tell you what can be done with your teeth. I sorry I can't offer more happy advice, but I feel that knowledge is the only way to get through the fears, let your dentist have a look and then you will know for definite, don't let your fears keep you away, remember that you don't have to do what the dentist advises, but they usually are right on your best options.

      Go get an examination and stop your imagination from thinking the worst.

    3. #3
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      Default Re: Decay below gumline

      Just read your other posts on decay at the gumline, so It doesn't sound like you have decayed stumps like I thought you meant, sorry.

      I also had dark lines along the gumline on my front teeth, most of that was stained tartar that has now been removed and polished away.

      Three teeth though did have decay along the gum although the rest of the tooth was fine. The dentist numbed the tooth, removed the decay and filled the hole with a tooth coloured filler. None of this was painful at all, either during or afterwards and you have to look pretty hard now to see the repairs.

    4. #4
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      Default Re: Decay below gumline

      Thank you so much for replying. I know I have some tartar, well after 10 years, of course there is.

      No I dont have stumps, whatever that means. My teeth are intact, thus far. But who knows may happen if I dont get my butt to the dentist. I am so fearfull, and I dont breathe well due to a lung disease.

      How is decay fillings done at the gumline? That sounds futuristic?Or maybe its been so long since Ive been to a dentist

    5. #5
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      Default Re: Decay below gumline

      Hi bioflame -

      I had 4 fillings done on my bottom front teeth, and they were all along the gumline. One tooth was worse than the others as far as the decay goes. I am not sure how my dentist got the fillings under the gumline, but she did. The only difference I noticed between these fillings and others I have had, was that my gum around where the work had been done was slightly tender for a few days following the fillings. Other than that it was the same as any other filling.

      My dentist used a little strip of plastic??, to actually shape the filling, to make it look like the tooth, and get the right curve to the tapered end.


      my new teeth-before filling.jpg

      my new teeth-after filling.jpg

      Hopefully this will give you an idea of what a good job they can do!!

    6. #6
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      Default Re: Decay below gumline

      Hi bumpthumper,
      Thank you for being so caring, informative. Your pics were a bit small, fuzzy, but I appreciate!

      Its not easy to walk into dentist office for me. For one thing, its embarrassment, Then being so afraid. Then having a lung disease, which makes it hard to breathe. And of course the cost. But I know the longer I wait, things will get worse. Your words hit home with me.

      But I wonder why we get cavities below the gumline?

      Sandi

    7. #7
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      Default Re: Decay below gumline

      Here is a before and after photo of two of my gumline fillings, sorry about the grey blob but you really don't want to see behind that .

      The decay had already been filled in with some temporary dressing in the before photo, but I think you will get the idea.
      Attached Images

    8. #8
      Join Date
      Feb 2009
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      Default Re: Decay below gumline

      Robotguy
      thanks so much for your pics. I feel there may be hope for me. You brought tears to my eyes with your pics and words. thank you again.

      Sandi

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