My dentist referred me to an endo as one of my top molars was slightly sensitive to cold, ie, when they sprayed water on it after cleaning. I have had one other root canal done by this endo about 10 years ago and have had no problems. He did all the regular checks and this time he sprayed something on a Q-tip (I think it was a Q-tip) and touched it to the tooth I was having problems with. It was quite painful and felt VERY cold when he touched it with this stuff. He also did the tooth right next to it and same result, but maybe worse. It was difficult to get a reading when I was just getting over the impact of the first touch. He immediately determined that I need to have two root canals. Can anyone tell me what is the stuff he sprayed to touch on my tooth? I totally forgot to ask him. Also, as it seemed extremely cold to my tooth I wonder if that was a normal check to determine a root canal. I'm a bit confused as I don't have any other problems with these teeth. They both have fillings (one tooth deep fillings) and my dentist tells me that one tooth has a cavity that needs to be filled. (same tooth with deep fillings) So, now I'm wondering if the reaction to cold drinks is because of the cavity. Should I just get it filled and see from there? The teeth don't bother when I chew on that side. I would appreciate any feedback. I don't know what is making me so doubtful this time. Thanks for reading this.
Hi Taurus, the cold stuff the Endo put on the Q-tip was most likely liquid Nitrogen or something similar to that. It is common practice for a dentist or Endo to perform the cold sensitivity testing on teeth that are bothersome to determine if it's dead (you wont feel the cold) if that's the case a root canal is most definately needed. If you felt it but it went away almost immediately that is normal and no root canal is needed. If you felt it but the cold sensation lingered for a long time that inidcates an inflammed nerve which would indicate the possible need for a root canal. You state that both teeth felt the same which to me would probably indicate that there is no need for a root canal, also the fact that you state there is no pain would tell me that you probably do not need a root canal. I just had my second root canal with in a couple of months last saturday and Thursday, i had extreme cold sensitivity that did not go away on one tooth, the other teeth that they tested the sensation went away almost immediately i also had a lot of pain when tapping on the tooth or chewing so a root canal was needed.
This of course is just my opinion, but if i were you i'd maybe seek a second opinion, no sense in getting two root canals if they are not needed. It's best to keep your teeth alive if at all possible, also who wants to pay for two root canals that may not be needed....
So, if I felt pain when he put the stuff on the teeth then that would likely indicate a root canal is needed? There was pain in both molars but it went away right away, and din't linger.
There was no pain at all when he tapped on the teeth.
I did ask him if he saw anything in the xrays that would indicate an absess but he said no only stringy roots in both teeth. From the small amount of research I did I was under the impression there would be something showing on the xray to support a root canal.
I was going to ask my regular dentist if I should get the cavity filled first to find out if that would make a difference, but I don't know how much time I have. Don't want the tooth to die. Thanks for your info.
You're welcome on the info, If the pain went away right away and did not linger then you should not need a root canal. Sometimes the tooth will show a darkk spot at the root on an X-Ray which indicates the need for the root canal. Neither of mine showed that, one was dead the other very painful and sensitive to cold. I am going to venture to guess that you dont need a root canal on a few reasons, one there is no pain, two the cold sensitivity did not linger and three there was nothing on the X-Ray to indicate that one is needed. I have a feeling that your Endo was just trying to get money out of you....however, i could be wrong so if i were you i would seek a second opinion which will either confirm or deny what the Endo is saying. Judging by what you're saying here though i really dont think root canals are needed, although i'm no expert. You coudl do a ****** search on Root Canals and you'll get more information than you probably cared to.... You probably do not want read my post a few threads down, it's my latest nightmare i'm going through with my most recent root canal. Most root canals are painless for some reason mine is being difficult.
Last edited by Border3899; 04-16-2005 at 08:53 PM.
Sometimes, the "vitality" tests are normal or indicate a normal tooth but in order to restore a tooth (ie. fillings, crowns, etc...) it is necessary to do a root canal preemptively. The last thing you want to do is place a crown ($1000) on a tooth then realize the crown will have to be destroyed in order to do a root canal through it.