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What does a toothache feel like?

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Old 11-20-2005, 05:55 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: New Britain, CT, USA
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CTmom HB User
What does a toothache feel like?

Okay, I know it sounds like a stupid question, but despite the fact that I've had many fillings and three crowns, I've never really had one before now.

For quite awhile now I've had a problem with a back molar. I had it checked months back by a dentist and endo. and both said the tooth looked great. Tested it and it was very much alive but not overly sensitive.

Turns out I had an infected salivary gland on that side which was removed surgically. They thought that had been the cause of my tooth pain. However, the gland is gone and I feel much better but the pain remains.

What is confusing the issue is that I have some residual (hopefully temporary) nerve damage from the surgery which makes my tongue feel very sore on that side so we are having a hard time determining whether the tooth pain is also due to residual nerve damage or if the tooth really is a problem.

I went back to my endo and dentist and they both said tooth still looked fine, tested okay. The endo. said my crown was a little high and adjusted it a bit. Obviously I'm not jumping into a root canal on a healthy tooth but...for those of you who have had root pain is severe but very sporadic. Sometimes it really hurts to bite on the tooth but other times it is just fine. It is not sensitive to cold or heat or tapping - it is really a spontaneous pain and the gum around the tooth tingles. Does this sound really unusual for a tooth needing a root canal? Since I've never had even so much as a toothache I was just wondering and trying to figure out what to do next. It sounds like most people who have had a root canal have either had x-ray evidence of a problem or very severe, constant intense pain. Is this correct? Just looking for other's experiences. Thanks!

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Old 11-20-2005, 11:28 PM   #2
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Colorado
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wintersun HB User
Re: What does a toothache feel like?

A toothache feels like PAIN,-lol. But really, it can be mild or severe, or off and on- I've had all kinds..Hurts to chew, then feels fine for awhile, or mildy irritting to a whole bottle of anbesol doesn't knock it out. That's when YOU gotta get knocked out untill you can see the dentist-lol.
But if they say it's OK, I dunno what's really going on?

Old 11-21-2005, 10:41 AM   #3
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Traumatized HB User
Re: What does a toothache feel like?

Hi CT,
I am sure you remember me. Sorry to hear that you are still suffering post gland removal. I have had the remaining three wisdom teeth removed so that they can not be used as an excuse anymore. My pain also persists in the submandibular and parotid glands. For some reason, they keep reacting but my ddt eliminates teeth being the problem. God knows what. Re. tooth ache and x-rays...the tooth I had root canalled never showed any problems on x-rays and when my whole body became affected, it continued to show no problems on x-rays. Only when the tooth was extracted did the ddt prove his urgency to extract it as being necessary as at the bottom of one root was a vac of pus. Some things just don't show up even on pc x-rays due to the positioning, angle of whatever is causing the pain be it a crack, abscess etc...Give it some more time, the gland operation isn't so long ago. Try B complex vitamins for nerves and sensitive teeth products. It takes a long time for nerves to settle down again so you don't want to do anything drastic. I am working through the pain at the moment as well before I go ahead with any further testing or dental work that I may regret one day. Healing is a long process and generally a half a year is a fair chance for something to heal.
Take good care,

Old 11-21-2005, 12:31 PM   #4
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Re: What does a toothache feel like?

Thanks Traumatized,

I've been wondering how you were doing. Was hoping all our dental trauma would be behind us by now!

I saw my ENT again today. He had no explanation except he noted I had a very dry mouth. I suppose it could be contributing to the problems, especially the tongue symptoms. I mentioned that my dentist thought I should see an oral surgeon (who is also an M.D.) for his imput and he thought that might not be a bad idea - rule out TMJ and such, and maybe treat the dry mouth (although I don't want to take additional meds. unless I have to). I'm having a good day today with minimal pain, but it really fluctuates up and down and I can never predict it, which is frustrating. Anyway, I'll make appointment with oral surgeon after Thanksgiving and try to be more patient. Definitely not going for the root canal at this time. Heck, yesterday I chewed granola on the tooth with no problem in the morning, but soft bread made it hurt at suppertime. Makes no sense! I figure I've had this pain for a long time now, a couple more months won't make a huge difference. I know what you mean about nerves healing - I had a cervical disc rupture a couple of years ago and it was really a full year before the pain went away after surgery...I'm just not that patient, especially when I'm not exactly sure what the problem is. I've started a diary of my symptoms so hopefully I can tell if things are getting better overall.

Hope you're feeling better soon!

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