Tue 17 Jul, 2007 05:15 pm
Biting down on a chicken leg bone, I lost my right front tooth (Bugs Bunny's right tooth).
I don't want the effort and cost of a dental implant. My dentist talked about a Nesbit and a Flipper. Are these viable approaches to this need? Anyone with experience with these dental appliances? Comfortable? Annoying or worse?
First I have to have the rest of that front tooth extracted. It seems the tooth wasn't doing so well, regardless of my eating habits.
Isn't there an animal that just grows a new tooth? One would think us humans would have this ability, since we have other biological enhancements like thinking well and a thumb on our hands.
Yeah, you'd think we could do that, what with our thumbs and all.
Doesn't a starfish grow another arm or leg or something if one gets bitten off?
And they don't even have any biological enhancements.
Starfish just think they're so much better than us.
I have a flipper as a precursor to getting an implant (I have to grow bone 'n stuff. Lovely). I can say that, while it is well-made, it is not the most comfortable thing on the planet, although some of that may be from me pushing up on it with my tongue as I have the irrational fear that it'll just come out.
In any event, my speech is also compromised, particularly s's and z's and it's very noticeable over the phone. I also feel very strange wearing it while eating. Since mine covers my eyetooth, if I take it out on occasion, it's not that noticeable unless I smile widely. With a front tooth, though, that's probably not going to be an option for you.
So my review of the flipper (if your dentist means the same as mine, essentially it's a retainer with a fake tooth attached to it) is mixed. Good for coverage; it looks very real. And it's okay for short intervals. I can smile and talk to people and it's not bad in person. I hear the difference but others say they cannot. But I have to take it out more than once per day in order to just do normal things and that's a pain, but I can live with it as it'll only be for about six months. As a much longer-term solution, though, I see that as getting old awfully quickly, but maybe that's just me.
What's a Nesbit? Is it a regular bridge, or something else?
I Googled "Nesbit" and it seems it was popular in the 1970's? It may be just the big brother to a Flipper, in that there are "C" shaped wires on the sides that allow it to have a stronger hold onto adjacent teeth. I can be totally wrong. Knowledge about dental things just doesn't seem to be something that I picked up. I think we learn about vitamin C, too much of this or that, but dental knowledge seems to have been left for the experts?
Thank you for your input. I'm no youngster, so the effort to get an implant seems like a lot of work (even if it was for free) for this point in my life. Personally, I just need/want something for cosmetic purposes when I'm out in public. At home, in the evening, or whenever, I just want to be comfortable, without the awareness of any dental appliances in my mouth, even if a passing mirror reflects a ghoulish countenance or "shiver me timbers" something out of Peter Pan.
I suspect we've been "marketed" a need to look like we have eternal youth. In the Middle Ages a few missing teeth were probably a sign of a strong immune system by living that long.
Why don't you just get a permanent bridge? The dentist could attach the front tooth to the teeth on either side of it. It would involve making a number of crowns, but would be, IMO a lot easier, (and probably much cheaper) than an implant.
I have heard too many stories of infections and other nasty stuff caused by implants. I once had that choice, and chose the permanent bridge. It has lasted a long, long time with no problems.
The dentist explained that the two teeth on either side of the missing front tooth are "virgin teeth," meaning they never had a cavity, etc. So, he wouldn't want to use those teeth to put in a permanent bridge. Thank you for the input.
I used to have a flipper, now I have a bridge. The need for the bridge was because the flipper wires eventually wore away at the adjoining teeth. Current technology may be better for saving your virgin adjoining teeth, but the flipper was not a good permanent choice for me.
When you say, "lost your front tooth" do you mean that it broke off at the gum line or that the entire tooth came out? If it broke off at the gum line then there is another alternative called a partial root extrusion which is a short course of orthodonture on the affected tooth that pulls the root down far enough to be used as an anchor for a crown. Good luck with whatever path you take.
The entire tooth didn't break off, just most of what protrudes from the gum line. A jagged piece of truth protrudes from the gum line, about the size of two rice particles (dry).
The dentist said the tooth calcified, so any effort by an endodontist, I'm assuming, would be futile.
The dentist was thinking of a Nesbit. I'm concerned that the "C" shaped wires on a Nesbit, that hold the adjoining teeth on either side, will eventually wear away some of the enamel on those teeth, and then I have another problem - sensitive teeth.
I'm thinking I only need something cosmetic when I'm out in public. Sort of like a "sock" for my mouth. Wear it when outside; otherwise, at home I can go barefoot and toothless. Especially, I don't want to sleep with anything in my mouth that I can feel is not nature's work. It would only annoy me into staying awake.
We can get to the moon, but one little tooth seems to be a real conundrum?
I have a cousin who works in a dental bridge lab...he says that is where dentists make the most money. If the crowns that hold the bridge fail,
you'll need a bigger bridge....the crowns have more pressure
on them to hold the missing tooth.....eventually the
bridge get bigger and bigger, adding more cost.
I lost several front teeth and was given a flipper. I hated the thing, and never wore it. It is merely cosmetic. I prefer to go toothless until the implants are done.
Flippers have to be taken out when you eat (it is rather weird to take out your teeth before you eat) making them worse than useless in social situations (which in my case almost always involve eating).
If you can get over the vanity just go without. Going without is even better for your healing process.