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Dentistry/Tooth pain after dental work


Both of my first molars on my lower teeth were cracked, so I had fillings put it. The dentist used resin composite, which I'd never had on my teeth before (I have plenty of almagam). I don't know if it was just the type of work being done or what, but it was a brutal experience. Usually, I feel fine after a day or so and I can eat normally in a few days. Instead, I started getting intense pain in my lower jaw. Just a dull, but very strong and almost unbearable pain. It usually happens towards the end of the day, but sometimes, others. My molars are still sensitive. It's been a month and I can't eat chips, pizza crust, or many cereals.

The right side isn't as sensitive, but the left side is virtually impossible to eat on. The dull, aching pain is mostly on the left side now. My dentist checked out my gums and said they looked good. He said the nerve might be dying on the left side and it might need a root canal. He didn't say anything about the right side. He said to not wait longer than 4-6 weeks, and that if I still have pain, we need to do a root canal. So, should I get the root canal and do nothing for the right side? Should my dentist give me a discount since I just paid $1000+ for something that failed and is just going to get torn up and redone? Thank you for your time. Reuben

Hello Reuben,

I think from what you are describing I would suggest you treat the left side which is the one hurting most.  Have your dentist check to see if the occlusion ( the way you bite together ) on the right side is too high meaning you hit that tooth too hard when you bite down on it.  It sounds like a root canal is necessary on your left side and occasionally when one side is treated the other seems to get better, it's what we call referred pain.  It depends on how badly the tooth was cracked and since you told me this is a molar it is possible the crack has gone down through the center of the tooth between the roots.  If this is the case then the tooth must be extracted and not have a root canal.  Your dentist is best to determine this but since you've been told probably a root canal then I think also that is the way you should treat it.  As far as a discount that is beyond my expertise to suggest and my advice is to discuss that with your dentist.  Thank you for your question and hopefully soon you will no longer be in pain.

Dr Karmen


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Thomas Karmen


All general dentistry questions, especially those related to fixed prosthetics. Endodontics, Periodontics, and implants, minor oral surgery I can't answer much about othodontics nor advanced treatment of carcinoma nor deep tissue surgery nor osseous surgery such as jaw reduction or advancement.


DDS In general practice and consulting with having done some lecturing for local dental societies.

ADA and Florida Dental Association and Iowa Dental association

DDS degree

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