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Need root canal but dentist can't freeze me



Junior member
Jul 9, 2018
Hi. New to the forum and this is my first post!

I found out 6 weeks ago that I need a root canal in my bottom right molar (last but one before the back).

I decided to move dentists as I had been experiencing some problems with my old dentist (not using x rays etc before diagnosing problems, to name one problem).

I have found a new dentist who is lovely. Very caring and reassuring. My biggest fear is not being numbed and this has happened to me lots over the years, so my fears aren't without any basis!

I have some pain with the tooth, but not too bad. The main issue is the sensitivity to hot and cold.

I booked in to the appointment and after many painful injections later, the cold sensitivity hadn't reduced any! My gums and surrounding teeth were all numbed.

The dentist send me away with a prescription for antibiotics and re-booked my appointment for a week later.

A week later sees me very relaxed and with no fear as I really feel safe with this dentist, plus I have had antibiotics for a week. I feel 'less unwell' than I did and have no doubts I will be having a root canal that day.

The injections were carried out and yet again I still have sensitivity to cold, albeit it wasn't as bad as the first appointment.

Dentist is at a loss what to do. He gives me another prescription for antibiotics and sends me away, suggesting he refers me for conscious sedation (which they don't do at this dental practice).

I have thought about this and would rather not go this route. I just want to be numbed and get it done the usual way. Sedation involves my husband taking time out of work and travelling quite a long way. Plus I will be more anxious as I don't know this new practice.

I also understand that sedation won't assist me in numbing, its just that I will be a bit out of it. That seriously freaks me out - my fear is feeling pain.

Can anyone suggest anything?? Very grateful for any suggestions :)
Are you in the US? If you are, I’d suggest trying to go see an endodontist. They often have different techniques for local anesthetic than a general dentist would. I’ve had endodontists be able to get a tooth numb for a root canal when my regular dentist has not for a filling or crown.
I am in the UK and my dentist has additional endodontist training.
See another dentist. Just like every other procedure some doctors are better at it than others. Repeated antibiotics makes no sense.
I have difficulty getting numb...always have, which is why I have such a dental phobia.

I recently had a root canal, and the endodontist numbed it as usual, then tapped my tooth to check for feeling. It didn't hurt immediately but I had a delayed pain that resonated. She said "you really do have a hard time getting numb", and explained that sometimes people have nerves that are not in the usual "road path", so it is more difficult to numb. She gave me a few more injections, in different places, and that worked. I agree that seeing another dentist might help.

That said, I had conscious sedation as well, because of my anxiety. For the second appointment of my root canal, I did feel more than the first time, but the sedation made it seem more annoying than painful. I am terrified of pain as well, and I hate feeling out of control, but the conscious sedation really did help.
What seems to really impress me is his care that it is not fully numbed so he sends you a way and doesnt' do it.. sure it is frustrating.. especially so many times and like other suggested you may need specialized training for this.. but.. at least he doesn't try to do it with not enough and cause more issues. pain and trauma!!

hope you get it so its painfree1!