I have been laid off and am struggling financially. I know I need a root canal treatment because my dentist told me that at my last appointment. We’d planned on waiting until my next paycheck, but then I lost my job. I don’t know how long I will have to live off my savings. Is there a length of time it is safe to put off getting the root canal treatment done? At the moment the tooth doesn’t hurt.
I am sorry about the financial hardship you are experiencing right now. I hope you are able to find a new job quickly. That must be very stressful, especially when you are worried about your dental care at the same time. I could not give you a definitive time, especially since I have not examined you or even seen any x-rays. I can, however, give you some general principles to go by.
See the Dentist Right Away If…
I know it is not hurting now, but if the tooth starts hurting in any way, then it will be important to see the dentist right away. You could be dealing with a dental emergency. Another thing to keep an eye on is any drainage that occurs or even a pimple of your gums. A pimple on the gums is an abscess. Each of these symptoms indicates an active dental infection that tells me you need to get an appointment with your dentist.
Most dentists went into their field because they wanted to help people. I would start by telling them what is going on. Given your circumstances, they may be willing to help you. If they are not, I would call around to other dental offices. Start with those who advertise on their website as affordable dentists. I feel fairly certain you will find someone willing to give you the treatment you need and then allow you to pay off the cost of the care.
If it is not hurting and has not for a while, you may be okay to wait. There have been patients who went for years putting off an arrested infection without problems. Once they did decide to deal with it, however, they found their body felt better. The infection, though not causing serious issues, was giving them a weary, achy feeling without them realizing it until it was gone. As long as you do not have an active infection, it would be okay to wait. However, if the infection becomes active again I suggest you call the dentist.
This blog is brought to you by Decatur, AL Dentists Drs. Drake and Wallace.