DENTAL MALPRACTICE

Dental Malpractice

Dental malpractice can include, among other things: improper root canal treatment; improper removal of teeth; a failure to or delay in diagnosing disease; improper placement of dental implants; improperly performed surgery; the improper administration of anesthetic; or the improper fabrication of dental bridges and crowns. Damages that may result from dental malpractice include lingual nerve or inferior alveolar nerve damage; trigeminal neuralgia; paraesthesia; loss of teeth; the need to replace the crown or bridgework that a dentist had placed you may be entitled to compensatory damages to correct your problems, as well as for your pain and suffering. There are strict time limitations on dental malpractice cases, so if you think you have a valid claim, please call us today for a free consultation.

Lingual and Inferior Alveolar Nerve Injuries

 

Every year, thousands of people have their wisdom teeth removed. Wisdom teeth, which are also referred to as third molars. The older a patient is at the time of removal the higher the risk of developing complications.

Permanent injuries can include jaw fractures, inferior alveolar nerve and lingual nerve injuries.  Often jaw fractures also damage the inferior alveolar nerve

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A lingual nerve injury is a devastating event for the injured person. Some lingual nerve injuries will heal within a few days of the procedure, and some injuries are permanent. Lingual nerve injuries can occur during tooth extraction due to the dentist’s instruments. Once the lingual nerve is injured by being severed or nicked by a drill or other instrument, the patient will likely experience some degree of numbness, pain, tingling or lack of sensation in that area of their mouth. Even if the teeth are tilted, difficult to remove, infected, or the patient delayed removal, the dentist or oral surgeon must still take the same degree of care and seek to minimize the risks and damage to the patient during the removal.

If you sustain a lingual nerve or inferior alveolar nerve injury you should contact a neurosurgeon familiar with treating these injuries as soon as possible since the faster treatment begins the better the chance of recovery.

Dental Restorations
Overcontour

Crowns should replicate the natural tooth being restored. If the crown is larger than the natural tooth it will trap bacteria which can cause decay or periodontal gum disease.

Symptoms of overcontour include bleeding gums around the crown or darkening of the gum margin around the crowns . Before turning bluish at the gum margin the gums at the crown margin may turn red and bleed. Healthy gums do not bleed either with or without crowns, bridges or veneers.

Inadequate embrasure space

Crowns should replicate the natural tooth being restored. If the crown is larger than the natural tooth it will trap bacteria which can cause decay or periodontal gum disease.

Symptoms of overcontour include bleeding gums around the crown or darkening of the gum margin around the crowns . Before turning bluish at the gum margin the gums at the crown margin may turn red and bleed. Healthy gums do not bleed either with or without crowns, bridges or veneers.

Open Margin

A common error is cementing a crowns or veneers with unsealed margins that subsequently leaks and traps bacterial plaque with resulting decay and/or periodontal gum disease. Open margins leave teeth susceptible to decay.

Shy Margin Of Preparation

A crown or veneer which does not completely cover the prepared tooth surface over which the crown or veneer is designed to be cemented is defective. Shy margins predispose to tooth sensitivity. Also the exposed dentin surface of the incompletely covered restoration preparation is vulnerable to decay.

Orthodontic Treatment

Orthodontic treatment can cause serious injury to a patient’s mouth if it is performed improperly. Most of the damage is avoidable. The most serious injuries that occur as a result of poor orthodontic treatment is root resorption leading to loss of teeth and need for implants.

Root Resorption

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Root resorption can occur during orthodontic treatment. Root resorption is the breakdown or destruction, and subsequent loss, of the root structure of a tooth. Root resorption of adult teeth can occur as a result of pressure on the root surface, most commonly caused by orthodontic treatment. Severe root resorption is very difficult to treat and often requires the extraction of teeth and replacement with an implant and a crown. An orthodontist should take pre-operative x-rays to determine the likelihood of root resorption and should take periodic x-rays to determine if there is any root resorption as a result of the orthodontic treatment. If there are signs of root resorption the orthodontist should closely monitor the situation or remove the braces to avoid the loss of teeth.