What Constitutes Dental Malpractice?

Dentists and physicians share more than just medical knowledge in common. Both can be sued for malpractice if they fail to live up to a professional standard of practice in their field. Malpractice suits against any type of health care provider are carried out in a similar fashion. However, there are some unique aspects to a lawsuit against a dentist.

Why a Dentist May Be Liable

Dental malpractice suits usually rely on the theory of negligence. Dental negligence can occur in many different ways. A dentist or orthodontist may be sued for failing to provide adequate treatment. They can also be liable for causing a patient to undergo an unnecessary procedure. Furthermore, a claim might arise where a dental assistant uses unclean equipment that causes an infection. Any of these acts will likely constitute negligence if the remaining elements can be proven.

There are many other acts that can amount to negligence:

  • Wrongful death
  • Injuries to the nervous system
  • Tooth extraction injuries
  • Anesthesia related trauma
  • Damage from a local anesthetic
  • Injuries from crowns, braces, or implants

Proving The Harm

A plaintiff must show concrete proof of an injury to succeed in a dental malpractice lawsuit. A personal injury lawyer will verify the injury before filing a legal complaint.  If you have suffered tooth loss, increasing oral pain, or an infection you may have a sufficient injury. It is best to consult with a malpractice attorney to determine if your injury can be attributed to the dental work.

Obtaining Damages

When you are injured due to dental malpractice you have the right to be fully compensated. Damages may consist of the cost of correcting the injury and any future dental which is necessary. You may also recover pain and suffering and lost wages. If it can be shown that the dentist’s act was intentional there may be a claim for punitive damages. Overall, the type and amount of damages that can be awarded will depend on the individual circumstances of the case.

Find Out if You Have a Dental Malpractice Suit

Dental work usually involves some sort of pain and discomfort. Yet, when the pain is out of the ordinary something may be wrong. If you’ve suffered an unusual injury after a dental procedure your dentist may be liable for negligence. It is important to consult a personal injury lawyer immediately to review your case. Utah residents can contact Rex B Bushman for more information on dental malpractice claims.