My name is Kevin (20 yrs. old), and in Dec. of 2011 I went to the dentist for a very overdue teeth cleaning. They found 2 (one relatively large) cavities, one on each of my lower second molars. The large one was on my left side.
Last Monday, 8 days ago, I went to have that cavity filled. I know it took me way too long. While my highly regarded dentist was drilling out that cavity, he mentioned how he thinks I may have waited too long to do it. Upon finishing the procedure, he confirms his suspicions by saying that I will be needing a root canal. He then suggests to his assistant to make an immediate appointment for a root canal, crown, and post (in one sitting). After some requests for elaboration, I gathered that he (the dentist) had to drill so close close to the pulp that, in fact, the overlying portion of the tooth that was remaining became near-transparent. It became transparent enough to see a little bit of pink showing through, indicating that they had arrived at the pulp. They did confirm that the cavity did not reach the pulp. They then filled it with Calcium hydroxide from what I understand. I was prescribed Hydrocodone and Ammoxicillin, as the dentist was convinced that I would be in great pain.
I made an appointment for last Thursday, and pushed my other cavity filling for another time.
I would like to note that the same night I received a temporary filling, I did not experience any pain, other than pain arising from when I drank a cold smoothie and it touched that same tooth. I also felt a great deal of pain that lasted a good couple seconds when I mistakenly allowed myself to chew my food with that tooth. The gums weren't tender, and neither clenching my jaw nor licking the inside part of my tooth caused any sensations.
During the days until Thursday, the only difference was that the discomfort associated with cold drinks subsided, but the pain from allowing food to be chewed remained.
When Thursday rolled around, I was sitting in the chair about to get the laughing gas before I told the dentist's assistant that, in essence, 'I just wanted to point out that I am not feeling any pain, which I understand is why you why you're doing this procedure today. I am a little sensitive to chewing food and perhaps some temperatures, but that's it.' The assistant went to speak to the dentist, and after returning, he confirmed that they were going to cancel my root canal. It was then explained to me that when they drill so close to the root like that there is usually little chance that the root will return to back to normal, and that the lack of pain is pointing to the fact that my tooth is fighting the good fight and may be able to return back to normal. They said they wanted to give it 2 weeks, maybe 1 month to see how itís going. They gave me Sensodyne tooth paste and sent me packing. I made my appointment for the following Monday, to have my other cavity filled.
Now it's Monday, I still have a temporary filling, and I have no problems swishing around water now, where I had problems before. This reassures me that I am making progress. Unfortunately, I still experience great pain when I allow myself to chew food. I felt like there were some exposed tubuoles from within the dentin allowing this sensation to linger. When they were about to start drilling the other cavity I mentioned, my dentist walked in and recommended they remove SOME of the temp. filling from the previous visit and leave the rest as a base, then throw some perm. filling on top of it. He said this would allow the tooth to calcify a bit so that in one year he may be able to drill that deep and not mistakenly puncture the pulp and place a complete perm. filling in. They decided NOT to numb me. He had his right-hand woman do the job, so a different dentist. She put the perm. filling in after drilling some out. She did accidentally hit some actual tooth while drilling which hurt quite a bit (since I'm probably still irritated) but it only lingered for 3 seconds, no more. She said the sensitivity problem is likely to go away with the perm filling. They then drilled the other cavity, which turned out to not be as deep.
To sum it up, the first cavity that was drilled one week ago is still very sensitive to FOOD CHEWING ONLY (as it seems). The second one they did does not have any sensitivity issues (THANK GOODNESS). Maybe super cold/super hot things might hurt the first one? I haven't tried. I'm thinking I should go back and get my pulp tested or something. If I aggravate the nerve, like I did the day before the perm. filling was placed, the pain got so excessive it actually felt like referred pain. I could not tell that the pain was coming from the top jaw, bottom jaw, first, or second molar. It just hurt. I'm hoping this is just a mixture of wisdom teeth pain, maybe some hypochondriac issues, and actual pulpitis. What should I do? Should I do some tests myself? What do you guys thinks? I can provide more info if needed.. I am concerned that the pulpitis may be irreversible due to one or two data points.
Thanks so much,