Today he drilled and drilled and kept drilling. I must have been in the dentist chair for half an hour. I had to take a short break because it started to freak me out. He got most of the way through and then said the infection had gone right through into the root. My tooth is dead. :/
Basically I have two options. He said the preferred option was to get a root extraction then put a crown in. I'm already due for a crown on the molar beneath it and they're about $1,600 each. If I want them crowned (and I'd have to do them both, but not necessarily right away) I'd be up for well over $3,000. That's probably five more trips to the dentist and another appointment next week for the periodontist because I need to have some of my gum removed in order to put a crown on the lower molar.
My other option is to have both teeth removed. He told me the only downside to that is I'll have diminished chewing on that side (down to 90%). Having thought about my options this afternoon I'd much rather go for the second option. Far cheaper, it'll only take one trip to the dentist and it's not like I need those teeth.
So how did I end up with an infection underneath a filling? The dentist tried to look up when the filling was done but it turns out he wasn't the one responsible. It was one of the fillings I had done back in 2000 or 2001 by another (cheaper) dentist. I'm definitely not going back to the old dentist. :p