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    Includes Expert Content
    Tooth extraction question
    nic14120 posted:
    Hello! I posted a few weeks back about a failed RCT, that the cap fell off, and the dentist wants me to extract/implant. I can't afford the implant for a few years. The dentist told me a few weeks ago I can go about 6 months with the cap off, before I can extract. Today it has started to bother me in the area. I have some tooth on one side, and very little on the other, more gum on the other side. THe gum part closest to the tooth next to it seems red. I am not sure if food hit into it, but I am forever cleaning out the best I can because food falls into the hole I have of what is left. I can't afford to get in to have it extracted right now, nor do I have time as I don't have a sitter and my husband cant get off work, so I have to kind of deal with it for atleast a week. During this time, if infected, can this be life threatning? I don't see any bumps or swelling, just red in the back. Is it ok to go some time withouth it being extracted. My sister had this happen 10 yrs ago, and has left it with whatever tooth is left. I had heard that an infection in the gum can spread to the brain, and can be fatal, is this true? That of course worries me...
    Zev Kaufman, DDS responded:
    Dear Nic 14120:

    I am sorry to hear about your predicament. However, the problem is NOT food being trapped, but PLAQUE, which is the bacteria and their by-products, which get deposited all over our mouths. Take a soft brush and gently brush directly, right over and into the broken down tooth. This should feel tender, yet in a day or two the gums should stop bleeding, get tighter and much less tender.

    If the gum does not get better, then you must see your dentist right away, since an infection might be starting.

    I cannot possibly comment on the seriousness of the possible infection, since I cannot see your x-rays and examine you. Only your dentist can do that.

    Please call your dentist as soon as you can, even if you cannot go and and see him in person.

    Best wishes,
    Dr. Zev Kaufman

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