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Orthodontist Damaged My Daughter’s Tooth

My daughter, who is about to go to college had braces for two years and then wore a permanent retainer for close to three years. It was time to remove the permanent retainer. Unfortunately, when the orthodontist did remove it, he ended up damageing one of her teeth. It is now recessed. It has also changed colors and hurts her when she bites down. I’ve taken her to another dentist and he said she needs a root canal treatment. I’m very frustrated about this. Should the orthodontist be responsible for paying for this treatment? This has been a frustrating treatment from the beginning. Not only have we spent a fortune, but the majority of the time we didn’t even see him. He just had one of his assistants do the work. The whole reason we went to an orthodontist was to have someone with extra training. I have a son that is about to need braces and I’m wondering if we would be better off with just taking him to a dentist for something like Invisalign.


Dear Joyce,

empty dental chair


A fixed retainer is fairly easy to remove. I am interested in hearing more about how this tooth was damaged. Either way, the orthodontist you saw is liable for the damage he did. He should cover the root canal treatment and dental crown. You didn’t say which tooth was damaged, but if it is a front tooth make sure your dentist uses a porcelain crown. Additionally, you should chose the dentist to do the repair work, not the orthodontist. He will either pick a friend or the cheapest dentist he can find to lower his expense in this situation.

It does not sound like this is the best orthodontist for your family. When you are spending all that money for a specialist, you want the specialist to be the major contributor in the treatment. I understand your frustration.

Given your experiences, I would suggest a different orthodontist for your son. You do not have to go to a dentist to get Invisalign. There are orthodontists who will do Invisalign or even Spark aligners. Spark Aligners have some advantages over Invisalign, but can only be done by an orthodontist.

I am sorry this happened to your daughter.

This blog is brought to you by Lake Travis Orthodontist Dr. Alberto Tostado.