Social Question

ibstubro's avatar

If you lost a front tooth and had to wait 4-8 weeks for a permanent replacement, would you spend $400-700 for a temporary tooth to fill the gap during the wait?

Asked by ibstubro (18804points) March 12th, 2016
22 responses
“Great Question” (1points)

Vanity or budget?

(Temp tooth would be 100% out-of-pocket expense.)

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RedDeerGuy1's avatar

No. I would rather spend the money on audio books.

zenvelo's avatar

Yes. For one thing, it helps with your eating. It is more than vanity.

Coloma's avatar

That’s crazy, really, $400—$700 for a temporary tooth for 3–9 weeks!
Man, these dentists really have you by the pulp don’t they? haha
In the past I’d most likely have bought the damn temporary tooth but these days I think I’d just hide out until the permanent tooth was ready. It would also depend on your work or how much interaction you had with others.

If you were a salesperson or in another position of high social contact it would probably be best to just bite the cost and save face. haha Pun intended.

dammitjanetfromvegas's avatar

I don’t have to deal with the public that much and I really don’t care what others think about me so I’d go with saving the money and deal without having the tooth for a bit.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Nah. I’d have fun with it. “Oh man, has anyone seen a tooth lying around? I think I just lost one!”

Coloma's avatar

Why not just make your own tooth. Maybe a tiny marshmallow stuffed in the gap or a pearl onion or a bit of Cauliflower or maybe a clove of garlic. lol

dammitjanetfromvegas's avatar

marshmallow tooth

Jeruba's avatar

This isn’t hypothetical to me. I faced this very question last year. It wasn’t one of the two in front but one right next to them. I decided to live with the gap rather than spend that much money on what was essentially vanity. Other than making me camera shy for 4½ months, it did me no harm, and now it’s well past.

P.S. During that time I began a new class and also led a weekly meeting. I had to remind myself the whole time that it really wasn’t bothering anyone but me and that if I could just forget about it, it wouldn’t bother me either.

ibstubro's avatar

I chose not to have the $400+ temp.

That was ⅓ the cost of an implant, so I’m spending the money on the permanent fix @RedDeerGuy1.

You take the temp tooth out to eat, usually, @zenvelo, according to my dentist. My tooth was loose for over 3 months and I’m finally enjoying sandwiches again.

I’m not laying low, @Coloma, just going on about my business. As far as being a salesman, I had the same thought as @SavoirFaire. Have fun with it. A good salesperson could turn a temporarily missing front tooth into gold.

My thoughts, exactly, @dammitjanetfromvegas.
I don’t really care what people think, and the savings will help pay for the fix. I forget to even try to hide the gap.

I actually thought about making my own temp tooth, for real. As a matter of fact, I have the old one. Clip the root, thin white plastic and some Sea Bond!

I’ve only had the gap for under a week, @Jeruba, but no worse for the wear. If I close my teeth and smile, there’s no black gap. Mine should be 9–11 weeks total to replacement.

jaytkay's avatar

Oh hell no, I would not pay for the temporary.

I would set forth on a quest to persuade Anna Paquin that we are soul mates.

ibstubro's avatar

I had to look Anna up, @jaytkay. Gotcha!

This is an eye-opener to me. The dentist acted like it was just a formality that he ask if I wanted to pay $400+ for a falsie.
I was considering it, and then found out that I might find out the temp was no longer necessary after only 4 weeks. I called around and found a place that would make me one for $200…in 3 months. lol

I have to work tomorrow. Maybe I should get a Reese’s peanut cup wrapper and black out some more teeth!

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

I’m vain. If I couldn’t take time off and hide at home until I could get the replacement tooth, I’d pay for the temporary replacement.

Cruiser's avatar

No way…I would just put a piece of Cap’n Crunch in the space until the new tooth was ready.

CWOTUS's avatar

I think I would find a new dentist. The only time a dentist made a replacement tooth for me (for an implant) I had a semi-permanent temporary cap for just a few days until he had the permanent implant made by a subcontractor.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I’m no model so missing teeth is not an issue. I would have also waited.

jca's avatar

I just had replacement tooth because a crown had issues. It took one week to make the permanent crown. I agree with @CWOTUS, time for a new dentist if it takes that long to make a tooth.

jca (36059points)“Great Answer” (1points)
ucme's avatar

I’d make out the gap was down to alien abduction…“the tooth is out there”

ibstubro's avatar

Ah, I appreciate your candor, @Earthbound_Misfit.
At the outset the dentist acted as if was a formality asking if I wanted a temp tooth, and I was game in the beginning. The time and money changed (as we changed course) making me re-think the money.
I thought there would a lot more discussion here. I feel better about going to work sans one tooth today.

The temp tooth would have been ready same day, if that was unclear.

jca's avatar

For me, temp tooth (or the technical term is “temporary crown”) took about an hour or less for the dentist to make up. Mine was on the side, and I would have been fine without it, but some advantages of having a temporary crown in place is the other teeth can’t shift around (you’ll be surprised how much movement there can be in a short amount of time with teeth missing). Also, he felt like I would be able to eat better with the tooth in place. It was amazing how realistic the temp crown felt and looked. I was in and out of there on my lunch hour.

jca (36059points)“Great Answer” (1points)
lasuz's avatar

I guess I am vain and would try to find out if dental insurance would pay for it or a large portion. If not I would consider going to a teaching hospital where the dental students would take care of the temporary tooth under the care of his/her instructor, and at greatly reduced cost. The permanent tooth I would get from my regular doctor.

If the above wasn’t an option I would see if the dental office would break it into payments for me if I couldn’t afford it.

If this is strictly a matter of resenting the ridiculous cost and not that I couldn’t afford it I would just bite the bullet (sorry) and pay. You have to be able to eat your food, and being a toothless wonder is not an option for me.

Jeruba's avatar

In my case, it’s not at all a matter of how long it takes to make a false tooth. It required a bone graft, which took four months to set up so it was broad enough to hold the implant. Then the implant (the metal shaft) went in, and it was another four months for that to heal and be ready to receive the tooth. The tooth itself was quickly prepared as soon as my dentist said I was ready for it. I’ve been through this more than once.

He is a careful, painstaking perfectionist, and I have never had anything go wrong in more than 20 years under his care. I totally trust his judgment as to what it takes to get optimal results. If he says four months, it’s four months. If he says two more weeks, I wait.

ibstubro's avatar

The whole thing is totally out-of-pocket, @lasuz. There’s no way around that.
The “flipper” – as the dentists call it – is strictly cosmetic. The dentist said I probably wouldn’t be able to leave it in when I ate, but some patients reported they could.
Payment in full before they start the temp tooth.
I might have only needed it 4 weeks, ro $100+ per week.
I understand that a lot of people would have the gap filled, and I totally understand that. I nearly did the same.

If I’d chosen a bridge, @Jeruba, they could have started immediately and been done in a few weeks. I’m holding out for the implant, like you, and I’m going to have a gap in my teeth until that’s done. Couple a months.

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