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My daughter-in-law speaks highly of you and recommended that I contact you regarding my dental problems. I am almost 60 years old and I am a smoker. I haven’t been to the dentist in quite some time and I began to   having problems over a year ago.    My upper crowns are now loose and I have lost two of my teeth or portions of them since last October. I currently have a very loose crown  that I will probably lose in the next week or so. My upper gums have receded to a point that I don’t think that I will be able to save any of  my upper teeth. I have seven front teeth that are sturdy but they have shifted in alignment. I’m not even sure that I have enough “gum” left to  be fitted for dentures. I have a very low gag threshold, so taking x-rays will be definitely a challenge.  I feel like an “old jalopy” coming in for an estimate and  overhaul.  Please let me know if there is any hope left for me.  I was not happy with the dentist that I had in the past and Tammy encouraged me to contact you. I hope you can be my knight in shining armor as I really don’t want to be a “toothless wonder.”

Thank you for your detailed letter and questions. It sounds like you have a number of concerns which we can address here at the office, and I am sure we can find solutions to all of them. Depending on how loose your teeth really are, we can sometimes prolong their life by many years by splinting (or bonding) them together to stabilize them. With upper teeth, there is almost always enough ridge left to provide support for a denture, so no worries there. Lower ridges, however, do sometimes provide minimal support for a denture, but if need be, we now have a new solution... dental implants. Though they are a bit pricey, we sometimes can place 2 or more implants in your lower ridge for a denture to snap on to. Also, there are ways to work around your gag reflex. When x-rays become necessary, I would probably spray the roof of your mouth with topical anesthetic to numb it. This often works well. I do look forward to helping you, Shirley... it is always a complement to have wonderful new patients such as Tammy refer friends and family to us. Please let me know if you have any other questions. We will even try to call you this afternoon, or tomorrow to see if you would like to come in for an exam. I look forward to meeting you.


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Last revised: December 06, 2004.