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Root Canals

Root canal pain

05/22/2006

Question:

I had a root canal done about three or four years ago. I have had no problem with it really for all of this time. In the past week, I have had pain shooting up from that region and thought it was the tooth right next to it. I went to the dentist and he filled a little hole. Three days later the pain was still there and I went back to the dentist and he could find nothing wrong with the tooth but did some minor drilling to see if that would take care of it because I grind my teeth at night. He said if the pain persists I would have to see a specialist to see if I may need a root canal but he did not see why I would. Well the pain is still there and seems to be coming from the tooth with the root canal. Is it possible to have pain from there and even a nerve throbbing from that tooth. I am just wondering.

Answer:

The pain may be coming from either of those teeth or it could be coming from a top tooth, or it may even not be related to any of the teeth.  It is really hard to tell from the symptoms you have described.  I think an evaluation by a root canal specialist is in order - even if it is just to rule out that the bottom two teeth are the source of pain.  A tooth even after it has had root canal treatment, can begin to cause pain again.  This is usually due to either reinfection of the tooth (due to a leaking filling or crown) or possibly a crack in the tooth/root.  The pain may be due to periodontal disease.  I just cannot say. Be sure you record when and how your symptoms occur, the nature of the pain, what helps relieve it.  This will help in the assessment of the cause.

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Response by:

John M Nusstein, DDS John M Nusstein, DDS
Associate Professor of Endodontics
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University