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Old 08-21-2019, 01:49 PM
 
4 posts, read 1,055 times
Reputation: 10

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I looked at my teeth closely with a bright flashlight before going in for my checkup. I noticed a brown spot that covered half of the top edge of a molar near the gum line. I thought it must be a cavity because a stain would go all the way across, right?

WhY would just half of the tooth be stained? Does that happen?

Anyway, the dentist didn't even mention it. He must have seen it since he was the one who cleaned all my teeth (not the tech).

I didn't draw his attention to it. Why ask for trouble, right? BTW, he did find 2 old degraded fillings he wants to redo, on other teeth.

So could it be just a stain?


Thanks
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Old 08-21-2019, 01:59 PM
 
Location: on the wind
10,412 posts, read 4,697,001 times
Reputation: 34807
Quote:
Originally Posted by brown987trout View Post
I looked at my teeth closely with a bright flashlight before going in for my checkup. I noticed a brown spot that covered half of the top edge of a molar near the gum line. I thought it must be a cavity because a stain would go all the way across, right?

WhY would just half of the tooth be stained? Does that happen?

Anyway, the dentist didn't even mention it. He must have seen it since he was the one who cleaned all my teeth (not the tech).

I didn't draw his attention to it. Why ask for trouble, right? BTW, he did find 2 old degraded fillings he wants to redo, on other teeth.

So could it be just a stain?

Thanks
Is it still there after your cleaning? Call the dentist who just looked at your teeth and ask him what he thinks it is.
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Old 08-22-2019, 07:22 AM
 
4 posts, read 1,055 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassia View Post
Is it still there after your cleaning? Call the dentist who just looked at your teeth and ask him what he thinks it is.
I'm asking here because I don't want the drama that will happen when I call the dentist office. He probably already told me all the info I'm asking about, but I have forgotten it. I have a bad memory when stressed out. I'm also very untrusting of medical people I don't already know. This is a new dentist to me. I don't want to get off on the wrong foot with him. I already had a semi-argument with a clerk there, within earshot of the dentist, because they don't know anything about how dental insurance works.
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Old 08-22-2019, 01:52 PM
 
Location: on the wind
10,412 posts, read 4,697,001 times
Reputation: 34807
Quote:
Originally Posted by brown987trout View Post
I'm asking here because I don't want the drama that will happen when I call the dentist office. He probably already told me all the info I'm asking about, but I have forgotten it. I have a bad memory when stressed out. I'm also very untrusting of medical people I don't already know. This is a new dentist to me. I don't want to get off on the wrong foot with him. I already had a semi-argument with a clerk there, within earshot of the dentist, because they don't know anything about how dental insurance works.
Well, if you know you have trust issues why would you trust what complete strangers on some anonymous web forum (the majority of whom don't even claim to practice dentistry) speculate about this? We don't even have a picture and certainly haven't seen you in person.

As you said, he's a new dentist for you. Give him the chance to address your concern.

You didn't have an argument with the dentist who did your cleaning did you? I fail to see why a simple question to him would be a problem. Why not call the practice and say you have a followup question for the dentist who did the cleaning/exam you just had? Ask him to return your call. Explain that you wanted to clarify what he told you about the stain at that time. What's wrong with that? Why would there be any drama at all? Just be polite.
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Old 08-22-2019, 02:01 PM
 
2,900 posts, read 1,632,855 times
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Why didn't you ask the dentist?
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Old 08-23-2019, 06:58 AM
 
4 posts, read 1,055 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassia View Post
Well, if you know you have trust issues why would you trust what complete strangers on some anonymous web forum (the majority of whom don't even claim to practice dentistry) speculate about this? We don't even have a picture and certainly haven't seen you in person.

As you said, he's a new dentist for you. Give him the chance to address your concern.

You didn't have an argument with the dentist who did your cleaning did you? I fail to see why a simple question to him would be a problem. Why not call the practice and say you have a followup question for the dentist who did the cleaning/exam you just had? Ask him to return your call. Explain that you wanted to clarify what he told you about the stain at that time. What's wrong with that? Why would there be any drama at all? Just be polite.
Thanks for the replies. At this point I have decided not to call anyone. I have an appointment in 3 weeks for the 2 fillings to be redone. Maybe I'll say something then. It all boils down to my lack of trust in other people. I was actually afraid if I pointed out the exact tooth with the stain, the dentist would say "OK, we can put a filling there, sure!" I did say something after the exam was over, like "So, all those spots are just stains?" and he said something generic like "stains do develop for various reasons, like eating habits" or something like that. I still didn't mention the specific tooth. I just wanted to get out of there and leave well enough alone.
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Old 08-23-2019, 12:14 PM
 
Location: on the wind
10,412 posts, read 4,697,001 times
Reputation: 34807
Quote:
Originally Posted by brown987trout View Post
Thanks for the replies. At this point I have decided not to call anyone. I have an appointment in 3 weeks for the 2 fillings to be redone. Maybe I'll say something then. It all boils down to my lack of trust in other people. I was actually afraid if I pointed out the exact tooth with the stain, the dentist would say "OK, we can put a filling there, sure!" I did say something after the exam was over, like "So, all those spots are just stains?" and he said something generic like "stains do develop for various reasons, like eating habits" or something like that. I still didn't mention the specific tooth. I just wanted to get out of there and leave well enough alone.
Well, this changes things. So you have other stained areas? You have other cavities already scheduled for fillings. If this spot was a cavity he would have confirmed that with the xrays used to confirm/locate the others. He would have told you there was a cavity and scheduled a filling on that tooth along with the others. I think your plan is fine...ask when you go back for the other appointment. Its true...stains develop. The enamel on your teeth isn't perfectly uniform. Could be those areas of your teeth are just more prone to staining for some reason.
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Old 08-23-2019, 04:07 PM
 
4 posts, read 1,055 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassia View Post
Well, this changes things. So you have other stained areas? You have other cavities already scheduled for fillings. If this spot was a cavity he would have confirmed that with the xrays used to confirm/locate the others. He would have told you there was a cavity and scheduled a filling on that tooth along with the others. I think your plan is fine...ask when you go back for the other appointment. Its true...stains develop. The enamel on your teeth isn't perfectly uniform. Could be those areas of your teeth are just more prone to staining for some reason.
Thank you.
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Old 08-26-2019, 07:51 PM
 
Location: Knoxville, TN
1,947 posts, read 943,251 times
Reputation: 5071
Quote:
Originally Posted by brown987trout View Post
I looked at my teeth closely with a bright flashlight before going in for my checkup. I noticed a brown spot that covered half of the top edge of a molar near the gum line. I thought it must be a cavity because a stain would go all the way across, right?

WhY would just half of the tooth be stained? Does that happen?

Anyway, the dentist didn't even mention it. He must have seen it since he was the one who cleaned all my teeth (not the tech).

I didn't draw his attention to it. Why ask for trouble, right? BTW, he did find 2 old degraded fillings he wants to redo, on other teeth.

So could it be just a stain?


Thanks
I am fortunate that I have a very friendly dental practice where I don't feel awkward about asking questions. I was at the dentist this morning and I pointed out to the hygienist that I have a small dark spot at the place where a filling (done by my prior dentist) placed to fill in a receding gum line meets my natural tooth. The hygienist said that the spot was a little rough and catching debris. She thought the dentist might be able to just polish it out. When he came in though, he said some of the staining had gone behind the filling so he recommended, but did not push, getting that small bit of filling replaced. I want to do it for cosmetic reasons and I am scheduled in two days for the 20 minute filling visit.

I think you are better off pointing things out and asking questions. What you see as "asking for trouble" could actually be catching something early that could become a bigger problem later.
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Old 09-04-2019, 03:36 PM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
7,734 posts, read 13,643,630 times
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OP, all kinds of things can stain teeth. I remember decades ago when I was in my 20s and did NOT drink coffee, my dentist actually mentioned that, i.e. "I can tell you don't drink coffee."

Fast forward a few decades, during which I started drinking 1 mug of coffee per day ... and one day after I brushed I happened to notice that the back of my lower front teeth looked REALLY stained. I was horrified and started brushing there much more, including right after breakfast. The stains faded dramatically within a few weeks/months (can't remember exactly). There were no cavities -- just coffee stains.

So I wouldn't totally freak out about stains ... just ask your dentist about them when you go back.
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