When you spend your time working on people’s teeth every day, you’re likely to make a mistake or make someone uncomfortable at some point. Here are the most common malpractice claims in dentistry you should know.
Failure To Diagnose Oral Diseases
As a medical professional, you have the skills and desire to help and heal people of their ailments. But as a dentist, you encounter a vast array of oral diseases that most doctors don’t see very often. People look to their dentist for expertise on these types of illnesses. Suppose a dentist fails to see, test, or address an oral disease they see in a patient’s mouth. If that same patient later finds out they have a serious disease or cancer of the mouth, you could face accusations of negligence. To avoid this, make every effort to test and examine suspect variances in people’s mouths. If it gives you pause, don’t ignore the problem—look for a solution.
Improper Teeth Pulling
Tooth decay, impaction, gum disease—people need their teeth pulled for all kinds of reasons. Patients come to their dentist seeking treatment, hoping to eliminate the problem. But pulling teeth is no simple job, especially if you encounter disease-related complications. If you cause further harm to a patient or even extract the wrong tooth, you could permanently damage a patient’s mouth beyond repair. After all, adult teeth can’t grow back. If a dentist pulls a tooth improperly, they could have a malpractice claim on their hands.
Dental Anesthesia Complications
Dentists who administer anesthesia, even in small doses, can harm patients if they experience complications. An adverse reaction or unmonitored symptom could lead to severe consequences, including patient death. You must use anesthesia with the utmost caution and care. If a patient or their loved one comes to harm due to dental anesthesia complications, they could hold you responsible.
Knowing the most common malpractice claims in dentistry can help you prepare for the worst. If you don’t already have coverage, our medical malpractice insurance for dentists at Baxter & Associates can provide the protection you need.