Pain with Temporary Crowns?

Early August I had a root canal on tooth # 31. For about a week, the tooth continued to hurt. I then went in to have teeth # 30 & 32 prepped for crowns as I had old gold fillings and the Dentist said there were cavities underneath the old fillings. A temp crown put on over all three teeth. 3 wks later, now they all hurt. I have had throbbing wake me from sleep. I saw him 2X about this & he told me they were just inflammed and I can have a root canal if I don't want pain. I am SO MAD !!

Doctor Answers 3

Dental Pain...don't want root canal treatment

Throbbing pain that wakes you up concerns me.  Your dentist is right, you should see a root canal specialist (endodontist) or a dentist who does root canals (not all general dentists do them).  Unfortunately, it is generally impossible to tell with any certainty teeth that will require root canal treatment after deep fillings, crowns, onlays or veneers have been done.  About 5% of teeth that have more extensive types of treatment end up needing root canal treatment.

You are most likely frustrated because it didn't bother you before your teeth were worked on.  I don't blame you, however that is a common complication associated with dentistry.  It depends largely on the health of the nerve of your tooth before treatment, amount of insult that the cracks, decay that required the resoration, and how much and how deep the dentist had to drill on your tooth to remove the cracks or decay and prepare it for the new restoration.

Oftentimes the sensitivity goes away after a period of time, but occasionally it doesn't that the root canal is indicated.  Since you have been in pain and are mad, I suggest seeing the endodontist for a second opinion.  He can discuss all the reasons why a root canal might be necessary and why these things aren't always predictable before treatment.

Laguna Niguel Dentist

Pain with Temporary Crowns?

The first thing that should be looked at is the bite. Having a large majority of the biting surfaces removed from the back of your mouth could cause the bite to be off. Your dentist should check that first.  Most of the time this is the source of the discomfort.  If there is continued pain after that is done, then there needs to be an evaluation of the condition of the pulp (nerve) of teeth #'s 32 and 30. An endodontist could determine the health of the nerve.

Peter Rinaldi, DMD
Washington DC Dentist

Pain on temporary crowns

Every time a tooth is prepared for a restoration there is a pulp (nerve) inflammation, this can be reversible or irreversible, unfortunately a throbbing pain waking you at night is a typical symptom of a acute inflammation that most of the time is irreversible. I would ask the dentist to check for a high spot on the temporaries to make sure you are not having a overload of those teeth, if this does not work do a consult with a endodontist to do tests on those teeth to determine if you do need a root canal.


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