• teeth-has anyone had really bad teeth as a result of the chemo/radiation, I had 2 crowns come out and I took good care, brushing

    Asked by KimG on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

    teeth-has anyone had really bad teeth as a result of the chemo/radiation, I had 2 crowns come out and I took good care, brushing

    and at first using the Nystatin susp.I didn't know I was supposed to use it all the time or use the biotiene the whole time or till after I was done. I just had the teeth pulled-they aren't in the front and who has any vanity left after this journey-or money. The dentist is still sending me bills which will go to my bankruptcy-not to mention I saved for those teeth to be pulled so this wouldn't happen.Oh well chock it up to another experience.kimg09

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • Sunnysideup's Avatar

      OHHH lordy, are you trying to get me started? Go back 24 years ago, before my first treatment, doc says go get all teeth in A 1 shape. I did. No problems at all. After that round of treatments was over, I started with fillings, root canals, crowns, etc. Each time asking, "so do you think I should just pull all these"? Every time it was NO NO, after this last time of getting treated, my teeth started falling apart all over front, sides , back. And now that I have had radiation twice to the jaws, they don't want to pull them, for fear of Osteoradionecrosis. The jaw bone can get rotten if it doesn't heal after a tooth is pulled.
      Their answer? Go get 48K worth of HBO treatments, then 20K worth of reconstructive surgery on my mouth to save some teeth, and not get the disease. SSUUURREEEE.

      So, my answer? Start pulling and lets see what happens. So far about 8 down, 18 to go or so. so far so good. If I would have had them pulled 10 years ago when I thought I should have, I would have save several thousand.

      You have to do triple work on your teeth now, keep water, rinse several times a day, brush 3 times, it's a full time job. Then they say you have to go get flouride treatments, cleanin once a month. etc.

      over 7 years ago
    • SDomiano's Avatar

      ME! I brush 3 times a day and go to dentist every year but since I had Chemo my teeth have become soft. I just made an appointment to go next week and I am sure I have to have 4 fillings and at least 2 crowns from where my filling have fallen out. It's bad I have never had problems like this I am 44 and I have only had 4 filling in my hole life and now it blows my mind!

      over 7 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      I did you all the same things you are, as well as rinsing my mouth twice a day with 8 oz of warm water mixed with a 1/4 tsp baking soda and 1/4 tsp salt. And I still had one tooth pulled and developed cavities. Chemo makes your mouth super dry, you can mitigate it, but not get rid of it. The dryness cause the environment in your mouth to help speed decay.

      over 7 years ago
    • packerbacker's Avatar

      I had dental problems before radiation and chemo, and needed more work done. It was suggested that I get the rest of them pulled due to the problems that have been mentioned. So, I did. I'm glad I did it. I am having some problems with the lower dentures fitting properly, which tends to be normal, but that beats the alternative to me.

      over 7 years ago
    • SMT4's Avatar

      I had really bad teeth after my first round of high dose radiation. I saw the dentist before and tried during treatment but it really didn't work so well with the scheduling and stomach not staying calm with all the meds. I am currently having two crowns put on tomorrow and four fillings. I never had bad teeth or breath before this. I also used the biotiene and the dentist told me it had to do with the salvary glands being nuked. Basically little spit more bacteria less saliva to wash the germs away. One tip besides the mouth was he told me is keeping a cup of water by the bed or on hand and sipping on it to increase moisture in the mouth that can help improve the condition, maybe not restore but moving forward perhaps prevent.

      Also an oncology dentist can help with recovery of your oral health. Here is a link to a onc dentistry in Chicago, might be to far but you can google onocology dentist and look for dentists who work with cancer patients and do oral screenings for them those are the dentists that can help you be aware of your options.

      Some info:

      NorthShore University


      National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research

      Oral Complications of Cancer Treatment: What the Dental Team Can Do


      Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center Survivorship Program


      over 7 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      @KimG, I too have had terrible problems with my teeth. I went to the Dentist before treatment and got everything checked. Anything that was even a slight chance of a problem was fixed. Then after treatment they just started going downhill. Each Dentist would want to patch up and fix things, then the tooth right next to that one would have a problem.

      Now, the Medical Center I go to has a standard protocall for Head and Neck cancer patients. When you have your first visit with the oncology dept. you go from there right down to the Oral Surgery dept. They recommend pulling them unless the are pristine. But even then they set you up so you know what to expect.

      I go in a couple weeks to get about half of mine pulled.

      over 7 years ago
    • KimG's Avatar

      Wow again, thank you all for your answers. I know we weren't supposed to go until after all treatment was finished and by then, well you all know. So even if you got them in great shape before the chemo it still destroyed the whole mouth enviornment afterward. I'm glad I got by with what I did. Thank you again for all your comments. I know now this is not an isolated incident. It just doesn't seem they prepare you enough about what will happen. I never knew about onc.dentists so thankyou for that advice.kimg09

      over 7 years ago
    • LeslieR's Avatar

      AUGH!!!! I do admit I am totally afraid of the dentist... but he's become my best friend here lately! I am one year out of chemo and have experienced teeth and fillings crumbling. On occasion, I can chew on something as soft as a sandwich and I find myself spitting out pieces of broken tooth! I've had one crown "reglued" as well. My mother always told me "at all costs save your teeth", and this is what I am going to do. A smile is priceless! : )

      over 7 years ago

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