Dental malpractice occurs for a number of reasons. Around 13% of the dental negligence claims are filed because the treatment did not meet the recognized standard of care. The consequences of medical negligence result in pain and even death.
It is not always easy to understand if your injuries have occurred due to the negligence of the dentist or due to your own fault. To understand whether you have a claim or not, you need first to familiarize yourself with the common types of dental malpractice. If you believe you have indeed suffered from dental negligence, you can seek legal representation from Philadelphia, PA personal injury attorneys.
Common types of dental malpractice:
- Usage of excessive force.
The recognized standard of dental care states that dentists should handle patients and treatment in a way that provides a pain-free experience. However, various dentists exert excessive force on patients, leading to choking or other complications. Dentists should handle younger patients even more carefully.
- Failing to diagnose.
When you visit a dentist, their duty is to diagnose your condition correctly and tell you about any potential risks and whether you need to begin treatments for them. If they fail to diagnose your condition when a dental problem exists, the dentist will be liable for your injuries if that condition worsens with time.
- Performing unnecessary medical treatments.
Various dental problems can be fixed with medications or lifestyle habits. However, some doctors suggest unnecessary surgical treatments for their monetary gain. For example, your dentist may suggest a tooth extraction treatment for a tooth that does not need to be removed.
- Diagnosing incorrectly.
Some dentists may identify your problem correctly but will fail to suggest a correct treatment procedure to fix it. In such cases, the problem stays even after the treatment and continues to grow, which can later cause problems.
- Inappropriate anesthetic usage.
Dentists use anesthesia to provide pain-free treatment, especially in surgical procedures. Some dentists may use not enough or too much anesthesia. Not injecting enough anesthesia can cause the patient to feel pain during the procedure. Excess anesthesia can have various consequences such as vomit, brain damage, choking, or premature death.
- Treating the wrong tooth.
Teeth may look the same to you, but that should not be the case with your dentist. Your dentist should know the difference between each tooth and what distinguishes them from each other. When they analyze your mouth, they should know exactly which tooth has the problem. If your dentist performs the treatment on the wrong tooth, they are liable.
- Broken dental tool.
Dentists should be careful about their operating instruments and check their condition. If an instrument looks like it will break, or if it is of poor quality, they should replace it with a new one. When a dental tool breaks inside the patient’s mouth, it can settle inside an open tooth cavity, requiring additional surgical procedures to remove. This results in additional costs of treatment.