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Old 25.08.2016, 11:31
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dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

Hi everybody!

I went to a dentist for a cleaning/routine check, and the lady there said:
Oh, next time we'll have to do some x-rays, your caries are getting bigger.
Then I looked at her (quite perplexed) and she got nervous and said something like "oh, erm, well, your caries grow really slowly, you know, erm, you seem to have strong enamel"

Is this normal behaviour?
Do they really let caries grow like this?
Or is it just to make more cash?
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Old 25.08.2016, 11:37
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

Change your dentist. Why does she need X-Rays if she can see the carries? BUT, X-Rays are good for looking under the previous repair work.
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Old 25.08.2016, 11:50
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

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Hi everybody!

I went to a dentist for a cleaning/routine check, and the lady there said:
Oh, next time we'll have to do some x-rays, your caries are getting bigger.
Then I looked at her (quite perplexed) and she got nervous and said something like "oh, erm, well, your caries grow really slowly, you know, erm, you seem to have strong enamel"

Is this normal behaviour?
Do they really let caries grow like this?
Or is it just to make more cash?
The only reason why x-rays would make sense in my eyes (IANAD) would be to check if there are more cavities which aren't visible to the naked eye yet (same way x-rays are done about every 2 years if one only goes in for tooth cleaning), so that those can get fixed as well, so as to fix everything in one go. If you have doubts as to this, or if she can't give you a decent explanation for the x-rays, or you are in pain, or scared, get another dentist.
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Old 25.08.2016, 11:54
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

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Change your dentist. Why does she need X-Rays if she can see the carries? BUT, X-Rays are good for looking under the previous repair work.
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The only reason why x-rays would make sense in my eyes (IANAD) would be to check if there are more cavities which aren't visible to the naked eye yet, so that those can get fixed as well, so as to fix everything in one go. If you have doubts as to this, or if she can't give you a decent explanation for the x-rays, or you are in pain, or scared, get another dentist.
Thank you for the recommendations.
I understand that x-rays are good to see under previous repair work, so... they keep caries on the surface to see how often they have to check the hidden stuff?
There's not really much sense in changing dentist if it is common practice and everybody does it, hence the question here
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Old 25.08.2016, 11:56
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

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Thank you for the recommendations.
I understand that x-rays are good to see under previous repair work, so... they keep caries on the surface to see how often they have to check the hidden stuff?
There's not really much sense in changing dentist if it is common practice and everybody does it, hence the question here
If you want your cavities fixed now, get x-rays now and have everything, visible and not visible to the naked eye, fixed in one go. If your current doc insists to do the fixing only on the currently visible cavities (and not do any x-rays at present), change doctors and have the entire treatment done at the new doc's after making your expectations clear.
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Old 25.08.2016, 12:21
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

My Dentist tells me to do an x-ray every couple of years...
but if they want you to do it on a regular basis perhaps they just say it to make money...
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Old 25.08.2016, 14:25
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

I get xrays every couple of years. I've had two dentists (from living in different cities) tell me that although they saw on the xray that there were small cavities developing, they would leave them and see if they disappeared because they weren't big, and if they did grow, it would be slowly enough that I wouldn't have to worry about it before my next appointment in ~10 months or so. But I'm not sure about your case, perhaps there's a dentist on the forum who can inform us...
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Old 25.08.2016, 14:33
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

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Or is it just to make more cash?
Probably the contrary. They me be so small that fixing them would result in significant damage to the enamel.

Edit:

I forgot:
I have multiple "spots" that are "unter Beobachtung", ie not damaged enough (yet) to warrant repair.

Why didn't you ask her why she didn't fix them right away? I'm sure that can be done by phone as well, ask the assistant to have her call back at a convenient time or something.

Last edited by Urs Max; 25.08.2016 at 16:19.
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Old 25.08.2016, 14:40
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

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Probably the contrary. They me be so small that fixing them would result in significant damage to the enamel.
That's what I was thinking. Filling small areas of decay may do more harm than good so they are favouring the watch and see approach.
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Old 26.08.2016, 09:21
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Re: dentist waiting for caries to get bigger?

Thank you everybody for your input!
I asked her and apparently, when you have small caries and take away their "food supply" (i.e. cleaning very well), they go away again, and the enamel still holds together.
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