My Tarnished Crown

Today’s post is an update on my ongoing struggle, with a small dose of whine tossed in. Eleven months ago I snapped off my front tooth. I shared a bit about it here. I was told this process would take 5-6 months but it’s stretched to almost 12. There have been hiccups in the timeline because of delays in healing and I can’t wait for to be over.

Yesterday I spent 3 hours in the dental chair on the final leg of this unpleasant journey. As I sat with my mouth open and multiple appliances crammed into it, I started to panic. They’d removed the temporary to alter its shape and make the mold for the permanent crown. As time stretched and the tooth still wasn’t fitting properly I began to worry that I’d have to walk around without a front tooth for several weeks.

Rather than hyperventilate, I mumbled to ask his assistant for a mirror. She looked down at my panicked expression,  smiled kindly and said: “no, that’s not a good idea”. I’ve been seeing the same dentist for almost 30 years and she’s been his sidekick the entire time so she knows me well.

This tooth has been an emotional experience for me and she’s seen me cry over it more than once. They finally got it in place but it left me with an aching jaw, raw gums, and a pounding headache that Tylenol won’t touch. Once I got home I realized that although I am sporting a tarnished crown in an unflattering color, I am lucky to have it.

Many of you have gone through the same process and know it’s often the best course to take when you lose a tooth. I just wish it was painless. Whine over:)

We’re heading up to visit our grandson tomorrow so if I don’t post on Wednesday, know that I am having a great time and not stressing about my tooth.

Thanks for reading ladies and have a great day!

Don’t forget to floss:)


  1. Have you considered changing dentists?
    I did after 30 years with the same dentist and expensive procedures.
    Get a new one and you will be much happier and your teeth will match. Your dentist needs to retire.

    1. This is his last shot! If they don’t match I will insist he keep trying until they do.

  2. What a journey it has been for you!!! I hope the pain will subside soon!

    Have the best time with your grandson!!!!

    1. Thank Andrea. He is the best medicine. I hope you are well.

  3. Julie,Melbourne,Australia says:

    Oh dear!I hope you’re on the road to recovery from your ordeal and I think you need some massage on your neck and some Rescue Drops.I must say it is amazing what they can do now in dentistry but it’s like “no pain no gain”.
    Enjoy your visit with your grandson and how’s little Lucy?

    1. Little Lucy is thriving! Thanks for asking. A massage sounds heavenly. I need to treat myself. Thanks for the suggestion. xx

  4. Oh, wow, Jennifer! I’m sorry! I can absolutely sympathize. I myself am going through the process of having an implant redone. I’ve been without a tooth for several months, but fortunately it’s near the back where it can’t be seen. As good a care as I take of my teeth, you wouldn’t believe the number of crowns and implants I’ve endured. I’ve even had a gum graft done on my lower gumline under the four front bottom teeth! But, unless I open wide and you’re looking into the back of my mouth, you’d never know it. I do have expert dental care. Take care, Jennifer. You will get through this.

    1. Wow Kathy! You’ve been through the ringer! I may need a graft up front where I’ve lost nine and I’m dreading it. That’s the bizarre thing. I take excellent care of my teeth. So not fair! Thanks for sharing.

  5. Hi Jennifer, your teeth look very nice. Thanks for sharing your experience. I can relate to your frustration, pain and anxiety. Your posting is very timely. Yesterday afternoon, a piece of my front tooth (a 20 year crown) broke off. I immediately called my dentist (great dentist). I was able to see my dentist this morning. The decision was made to replace the old crown with a new one. I agreed to start the procedure immediately. I spent 2 1/2 hours in the dental chair with my mouth open, multiple appliances crammed into it and, like you, I started to panic (this was the first time I panicked like this at the dentist’s office). I had to sit up and take a few deep breaths. On top of that I had to sit for 4 minutes with a mouthful of paste to form a mold. 4 minutes is not long, but it seemed like it was taking forever. Back to the dentist, in two weeks, to replace the temporary crown with the permanent one (at least I hope it will be permanent).

    1. I did those exact molds! It felt like it took forever! It was do hard not to gag. I hate those. I hope your crown goes smoothly.

  6. Yvonne G. says:

    So sorry to you had to go through that. I would have needed a major sedative to have survived that. Have fun with your grandson.

  7. Oh dear…I do empathize. I have had quite a few crowns but they are not in the front.
    Fortunatley we have a great dentist who is gentle and kind…it does put me at ease when he talks me through everything that he is doing…I hope you are feeling better now.

    1. Thanks Leslie. Mine is very kind too but I’m more sensitive about this than any other dental issues I’ve had.

  8. I feel your pain and you have my full sympathy. Similar happened to me while on holiday in France. I had 6 months without a front tooth as the dentist couldn’t replace the crown. Although the wait seemed endless the wait was eventually worth the end result. Enjoy your time with your grandchild.

  9. I understand dental visits perfectly. They’re awful. One time a few years ago I got so panicked I left the dental chair and went home.

  10. Kathleen O'Brien says:

    While I love my dentist too – I hate dentists as a group – I’ve got too many painful dental stories. My funny story about dentists is when I was single, my friends tried to set me up with a friend who had seen me and wanted to date me – I found out he was a dentist and said no way – they pledded “he’s cute, he’s got a great practice with good money and really nice” – I was “how could he be nice, he’s a dentist!!” Needless to say, it never came to fruitition.
    I certainly understand about the teeth – but yours in your picture look great . I hope this clears up soon and you are back on the road with great teeth soon.

    1. That’s funny Kathleen! My dentist is making a bundle on me so they do very well financially 😉

  11. Susan Clark says:

    Glad you are almost at the end of this emotional journey. Having work done on your front teeth is very stressful. I had two crowns on my front teeth due to the teeth breaking down. Even though I have used my dentist for 20 years and I am comfortable with him and his staff, I found the process to be completely unnerving. I did not have to deal with the complex issues you’ve described, but I have shared a small bit of the experience and my heart goes out to you. Here’s to positive thinking, a good temporary tooth and all will be will soon enough. Take care of yourself.

    1. Thank you Susan. It seems many of us have had these nightmares. Wishing you good dental health :))

  12. Cheryll Samspon says:

    Lost a front tooth 20 years ago and had same thoughts as you – was not going out in public without one. My procedures for a bridge went smoothly, and I had the new crown within a few weeks and got rid of my “flipper.” However, I had fought against losing that tooth for over 40 years before I finally had nowhere else to turn but to lose it to the dentist.

    1. I had a similar experience with a back tooth several years ago. I first cracked it eating a salad. That required a root canal and a crown. Ten years later I needed another root canal and second crown. 5 years later it abscessed and they had to pull when 3 months of antibiotic couldn’t kill the infection. By that point the infection had spread into my cheek bone. Emergency extraction on Christmas Eve was my gift that year. Six months later I had bone material added then 3 months later an implant them finally a 3rd crown. It’s my $15,000 tooth. The irony is, my bite is so bad I have since chipped that crown. Argh!!!

  13. That was a long, drawn out process and you have every right to complain. I had two crowns done last year and one last month. My jaw and gum line always hurt and I have a terrible headache for the day. I find an Advil/Tylenol combo help ease the aches and pains.
    About the panic attack, My dentist prescribed an ant- anxiety pill to take before my work. It keeps me calm and he can work unemcumbered by me stopping him. You might try asking your dentist to prescribe something before any upcoming procedures.
    I would panic too, if it was a front tooth. They can do amazing things now to give you that perfect smile again. So…put on that beautiful smile of yours and go have fun with your grandson. It will all fade into the background.

    1. Thanks Joanna. I did think of asking for knock out gas but he needed me awake for molds and stuff. I hate those molds!!!

      1. That’s why an anti anxiety pill works best. It just takes the panic and distress out of the situation. Your sense of touch is the same.

  14. marlene alves says:

    Jennifer, you look great in the photo…teeth and hair bot ! I’m wondering if, in your vulnerable & exhausted state, you are misjudging the tooth color. Unless the photo has been retouched, your teeth look beautiful and your hair looks thick and perfect.

    By the way, am just on my way to call for a dental apt; an old crown came off while I sat in my hairdresser’s chair on Saturday; however, one of the things I am MOST grateful for is living in these times of “modern” dentistry; it’s one of the many blessings this ol woman has an immense gratitude for…having lived in those old 1950’s days. Thank you, God!

    1. This photo is from before this disaster. I’m avoiding closeups until it’s finished. This temporary is very gray. Grrrr. I want this over. Thank goodness I trust my dentist. Hope your crown goes back on smoothly.

  15. What a terrible ordeal and no wonder you’ve been crying and anxious about it. My mother… at a certain age… did the same thing. Since I have/get EVERYTHING my mother did… It’s already occurred to me that my small, middle tooth in the front might snap off. Heal well, my friend and know that dentistry is also an art, and they will make it right, again. xoxox, Brenda

    1. Thanks Brenda! I sure hope yours doesn’t snap off like mine did. Xx

  16. I understand how you feel! I have a fracture in one of my front teeth due to a fall. My dentist says my tooth is “bruised” and I will need a crown. My teeth have shifted and become crowded (who knew perimenopause could cause this??) so I also need invisalign. Ugh. I hate all of this and have been emotional about the whole process just like you. However, I am thankful for a good dentist who can help me. Hang in there!

    1. This came as a total surprise to me too. One of my front teeth moved backwards and the other moved forwards and the two on each side started turning out. When I realized it I rushed off to the orthodontist. He told me the same thing – my teeth had shifted due to menopause. He was able to make me a retainer and I had to wear it constantly for a while but it put my teeth back just perfectly. Now I just sleep in it.

    2. You hang in there too! I should have had Invisalign years ago which could have prevented a lot of this cracking of teeth. I may still investigate it.

      1. You could also get a mouthguard that you wear at night. Many people who chip or break teeth easily are nocturnal grinders. The mouthguard can be custom molded by your dentist for about 600$. You wear it on your top teeth. There are also drugstore versions you can mold yourself at home fof around 50$. I know this is an older post. I hope you see it. I recently discovered your site and really enjoy it. Thank you!

      2. I do wear a nightguard every night. I shudder to think what my crowns would be like if I didn’t. Welcome Jackie!

    3. So sorry Miriam!! It’s such an emotional experience. I hope yours goes well!

  17. I totally understand how you feel. I had a second tooth removed yesterday, both lost due to bad luck. I recall in elementary school when our teacher brought out the giant set of teeth and toothbrush and taught us about good dental hygiene. “If you take care of your teeth, they’ll last a lifetime”, she said. Not necessarily. You can do all the right things and still lose them. My crown is tarnished too, but I remind myself that at my age,60, it’s far from the worst thing that can happen to me. So, “whine” a little and just keep moving forward. Thank you, for sharing your troubles.

    1. Oh no Robin. I’m so sorry. I do know how brutally painful that is. Feel better! I take excellent care of my teeth but was dealt a weak set.

  18. I feel your pain and anguish. I have also shed tears over dental issues, 2 implants, a 7 tooth bridge, and several root canals. You can imagine the cost. In my mind I think that I don’t deserve this, I take good care of my teeth. May be this will be my big thing to tolerate and skip the heart disease and cancer down the road. Hang in there… Youre not alone.

    1. That’s a great way to look at it. I’d rather have dental nightmares than health struggles any day. I know the cost is astronomical. Sorry you’re dealing with it too.

  19. My jaw ached just reading your post. So sorry you had to go through that. You and Lucy have both had a rough go. You look beautiful in that photo! Your hair looks GREAT!

  20. You had not mentioned this in awhile so I thought all was well and over. I am sure it will look fine. So sorry about the pain and headache though..that’s a bummer. Hope you are better today.

  21. ha! I meant to panicky in the chair! have a good day!!! You always look good to me!

  22. It’s a bitch getting older isn’t it? Everything starts to go downhill, especially the teeth! Please don’t be too self conscious about your tooth, you look great in the pic with this post. so many hours in the dentist chair! I would have been packy also. Take care and hold your head up high!

    1. Thanks Linda. The alternative to aging stinks, but this is not an easy ride;)

  23. Katherine Yvonne Weimer says:

    I, too, have had extensive dental work…not fun and very expensive! Hang in there because there is not much of a choice!
    When I saw title of your post, I thought it was about your hair! I have a question about Minoxidil. Do you find it causes some dry scalp. Since starting it, it looks like my hair is snowing when I brush it. I have only been using it abou a 2 months. I have a follow up dermatologist appointment on Thursday so I wanted a response from someone who has used it long term. Thanks ahead!

    1. I have not. Check that you haven’t developed seboreah. It causes extreme dandruff. I suffer with that and need to add in salicylic shampoo every once in a while.

  24. Sorry about your tooth, but you will be thrilled to know your hair looks marvelous and so thick! Whatever you are
    using must be working. Have a great time with your Grandson.

  25. I feel your pain! I have had my share of dental work, and it’s not over. Ugh.

  26. I feel your pain! After many dental procedures over the years (crowns, 2 implants, a root canal), both my mouth and pocketbook have suffered. I have decided I would rather give birth than have a major dental procedure. At least you get something adorable and cuddly after the pain. ????

    1. Excellent point!! I’ve had 11 root canals, multiple crowns and now 2 implants. I feel like the bionic woman.

  27. I wondered how you were making out with this. What a drag! You look great in the picture above though. Hopefully it won’t be much longer. One of my coworkers just fell on the sidewalk and lost one of her front teeth. She can’t afford an implant and will be getting a denture but is walking around without anything at the moment. That’s tough. Have a good time with family!

    1. Oh no, I’m so sorry to hear that Janet. I do know how lucky I am to have been able to afford the temporary teeth in the interim. I could have been finished ages ago if I’d gone with a denture my he told me I’d probably snap it often because my bite is so bad.

  28. So sorry you’re going through this. Sending you love and hugs.

  29. If the above photo shows your new crown, your teeth all look the same shade. However, if American dentists are anything like Australian dentists, they ‘charge like wounded bulls’ and you have every right to whine. The centist should have done the job properly in the first place. (My whine is now over). Enjoy your time with your grandson.

    1. This is before the disaster. I’m avoiding close ups until it’s finished. And yes, the cost is outrageous. Thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *