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Root Canals

Pain after root canal

06/25/2008

Question:

I had a root canal on the lower left molar 2 months ago. Two weeks ago I started experiencing pain in the tooth, in particular when chewing, though it does have pain and throb sometimes when not chewing; that pain can be signficant. If I press on the tooth it hurts. Motrin controls the non-chewing/throbbing very well, but I can`t chew on it.

I called the endondontist and he said it sounded like the bite was too high, and to call the general dentist. He lowered the bite, and I thought I might have had some temporary relief, but it soon got bad again. I saw my general dentist yesterday for routine cleaning; he said the x-ray looked fine, and to try and live with it for a while to see if it calmed down, as there weren`t very good options if it didn`t. Any thoughts as to what this might be, and suggested actions. I believe I can "wait it out" with Motrin if it is likely to calm down.

Thank you.

Answer:

It is hard to arrive at any conclusions from such limited information. The root canal was completed 2 months ago, but when did you have the crown placed? There are many possible causes of the discomfort (crack, new crown, etc.) and I can not speculate as to the cause. If you called the endodontist, had an adjustment by the dentist, and you are still having discomfort, I would recommend returning to the endodontist for a reevaluation.

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Response by:

Melissa McCartney Drum, DDS, MS Melissa McCartney Drum, DDS, MS
Assistant Professor of Endodontics
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University