Thursday, September 16, 2010

At a loss (and not a lose of nerve)

As in, I didn't (repeat, did not) have a root canal this morning

Although, I almost wish I had. Because I'm still in pain.

I showed up at the crack of 8:00 - which would have been fine had my adorable son not chosen THIS morning to sleep until... well, I don't know when he would have slept until because I had to go wake him up at 7:00 to head to our friends' home where he could be supervised while I headed to what I thought would be my first root canal.

And it wasn't. Did I say that already?

I arrived there, shaking, and practically in tears of both pain and frustration mingled with fear. They took an x-ray and I spoke with the hygienist for a while. When the Dr. came in she performed a number of fairly rudimentary tests. "here, bite on this, tell me if it hurts". "Let me put something cold here, tell me if it hurts." "Does it hurt if I tap here? how about here?"

The result?

The pain is actually radiating from BETWEEN two bottom, back molars. One, the furthest one back, is the newly crowned molar. The other has only a filling. A LARGE filling, but just a filling none the less.

The problem with this result is that it lead the Dr. to believe that the nerve was not damaged. In other words, it isn't worth removing. She postulated 3 possibilities: one, the non-crowned tooth has a crack in it that hasn't reached the nerve. Such a crack might be aided by a crown - even if it's only a temporary fix before a root canal is necessary. two, the recently crowned tooth is still calming down, as is the one next to it which was likely jostled around a bit. Three, the recently crowned tooth needs a root canal, but isn't to the point of yank-it-out pain yet. Such pain, she told me, may be characterized by waking you up from a dead sleep, keeping you from drinking anything that isn't room temperature, etc.

My fourth theory is that my horrific (yes, it has reached that level) TMJ causes some pain which radiates from my jaw to my molars. This theory becomes especially tempting to believe when I consider that I ONLY have TMJ on my right side, and ALL these teeth are on my right side as well - right next to my jaw. Go figure.

So, about my tooth (I'm sure you're SICK of hearing about this, but hopefully the end of the saga is imminent) The pain only occurs when the bottom and top teeth touch. So I can concievably eat an entire meal, and as long as I'm being VERY careful not to let the teeth touch, I can come out just fine. But the moment they do, wowee!

So I made an appointment to have the other molar crowned tomorrow. I may yet cancel it, not sure if I jumped the gun. Not sure if I should just wait it out and see if the tooth "settles down, but really, it's already been 6 weeks. Can't someone just wave their magic wand and make this all disapeare?

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