If you recently had a dental procedure performed and it caused you an injury or illness, you might be able to sue the dental practice. When negligence is involved with dental treatments, it is referred to as dental malpractice. This could be from many types of errors caused by the dentist, oral surgeon, specialist, or nursing staff.
Know Who is Responsible for the Injury
When you get injured in a dental practice, you first need to determine who is responsible for the neglect. If it was an injury caused during a surgical procedure, such as nerve damage while getting a tooth extracted, you will likely be able to hold the oral surgeon liable. However, that oral surgeon must have done the nerve damage due to negligence and not from an accident that can happen with these surgeries. If you believe you received a dental infection from the hygienist using tools that were not sanitized, you may hold the hygienist liable for the infection.
You Need to Prove the Cause of the Injury
Now that you have narrowed down the person responsible for your dental-related injury, you need to provide proof of the negligence itself. There are many accidents occurring in the dental field that can happen that don't necessarily mean you can file a lawsuit. Malpractice is not suing a doctor or dentist for any result you didn't like after treatment. It must be something that could have been avoided if the dentist was not negligent. Try talking to other staff at the dental office or getting help from an lawyer who can look into the matter further and get the right type of documentation. Seeing another dentist about the injury can also help.
Calculate the Damages Before Filing a Claim
Before you file a claim for dental malpractice, you need to calculate the damages. This will help you and your attorney figure out how much to sue the dental practice for. Don't just consider financial damages, but emotional or psychological ones as well. For example, the ordeal might have been emotionally taxing, causing post-traumatic stress disorder. If you were getting oral surgery, and the person responsible for the anesthesia was being negligent and not giving you enough anesthesia, you might have woken up during the procedure. This can cause emotional issues as well as physical ones. Another thing to remember to add when calculating damages is missing income if you have to take time off work for treating the injury.