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Dental Emergencies Can Cause Hospitalization

Toothaches are usually the thing that drive people to visit the dentist, even when they know that they should be going to see one anyway. This is because people are afraid of the dentist, and afraid of the pain that (in their minds) is a part of dentistry. This is absurd, because untreated dental ills can cause blood disease, sepsis, death, more severe surgeries, and hospitalization. The funny thing is that every single dental problem you or anyone else may encounter can be prevented. 

Boston, Massachusetts

A study coming out of Boston seems to suggest that more and more people are being hospitalized for completely preventable, treatable oral infections.This is backed up by evidence from the New York Times, which states that there have been 40% more hospitalizations this year alone, and of that, 89%, meaning he overwhelming majority were for emergency cases. Oral infections such as periodontitis, and infections arising from an abscessed tooth were the most common problems. Between 2000 and 2008, in the US alone, some 61 000 people were hospitalized from periapical abscesses, which are abscesses that are caused by tooth decay, and which spread from the apex of the root into the jawbone and beyond, causing blood borne illnesses and sepsis. This is a totally preventable illness, and yet 66 people died in their hospital beds due to such infections.

Making Sense Of The Numbers

What do we do with such shocking information? How do we make sense of it all? Did people really have teeth so bad that the rot set in and actually killed 66 people between 2000 and 2009? The answer is yes, people did have teeth so bad that it killed them, and in this millenium nonetheless. Although the science and technology to prevent such disasters is readily available, and the treatment of an oral abscess is considered routine work with the success rate for such surgeries being somewhere over 99%, the reason these people had to die is not medical, it is because of ethical considerations. You see, health care in the United States is private, meaning it is only available for some, and if you are poor, you may as well die. What is more, proof of this statement is the fact that of those 66 deaths, the majority did not have health insurance. If you are uninsured, do not get sick, because even a dental cavity can cause your death. For some, the technology of the 21st century is readily available, while for others, medical care remains at the level of the middle ages. No technological advancement will help us if we oppress each other so, and these statistics are downright shameful.