One of my first orders of business, once I was done doggy paddling through the murky waters essentially on my own, was to go to another dentist for a second opinion. I'm so glad I didn't let the first guy yank out my bad tooth with the myriad of expensive decisions that would eventually follow (not good to just leave a hole, screws things up) because this new dentist has been so reasonable about trying different things that are less dramatic and less expensive (even with dental insurance, costs can get a little nuts, so it's a concern). Since it's not just a sensitivity issue that prescription toothpaste (given to me free) can cure, the next guess is that it's the filling I got sometime in 6th grade around the time I went to a friend's bat mitzvah (I remember that but don't remember what I had for breakfast, oy!), which would make that filling pretty damn old. I didn't realize that fillings often have to be replaced after 5 to 15 years, but according to Google, they do. (Seriously, click on the Google thing, and next time someone asks a question they didn't need to ask you, you'll have a witty retort.)
And so, at the end of this lengthier than I intended post, I'm happy to share that I did my homework and got that to which I'm entitled in terms of my dental insurance and also in terms of a likely much better avenue to strut on down with this tooth. It pays to seek a second opinion through research or plain stubbornness and not accepting an answer at face value (or both).
I'm not as happy to share that I have to go soon to have a needle poked into my gums (I come near passing out sometimes, seriously, seeing white, feeling pukey) so that I can have my face drilled. Or that I get to go back again later in the week for the same in a different quadrant of my mouth. Still, that's just my first opinion. The second is that it will be nice to be all fixed. Well, if this works... Stay tuned.