The sheer misery of not knowing if it’s bruxism/ atypical facial pain or a cracked tooth

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MollyMc

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I’ve had a catalogue of issues with a particular area of my mouth (upper left). I had a tooth extracted from the area a year ago after several treatments inexplicably failed. Immediately after, the tooth next door started to hurt. It shows nothing on x-ray. It’s hurt ever since. I’ve had a Maryland bridge attached to it recently, and it hurts even more now. Sometimes the pain moves to the molar next door. Nothing shows on x-ray. These are virgin teeth. I know I grind. My dentist is going to try and adjust my bite next week.
In the meantime, I’m in despair: another weekend of fear, pain and anxiety (it’s much worse when the dentist is closed).
No one understands. Everyone thinks I’m imagining it. I have genuinely had dental pain every day for over a year. There is no end in sight.
 
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MollyMc

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Oh, and I’m now on pregablin, in case it’s neuropathic pain. So I’m also drowsy and nauseous.
why does this Maryland bridge hurt so much?
 
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Lrobyn

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I’m so sorry you are feeling dental pain every day, and I’m sending you good vibes that you will find your answer!
 
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MountainMama

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So sorry you are dealing with this. I was diagnosed with atypical facial pain after two root canal failures and three extracted teeth, two of which may not have needed to come out. Now I struggle with pain, not knowing what it is. The two teeth that were possibly extracted erroneously were diagnosed as cracked but the surgeon said he didn’t see any evidence of it once they were out. My most recent extraction yesterday was actually cracked, which is a relief (sad to have to say that) because at least it wasn’t extracted for no reason.
One of the things that I base it on now is whether the tooth is sensitive to heat and cold. The neuralgia causes spontaneous pain, just like irreversible pulpitis and aching in the tooth but the one that was definitely cracked had heat and cold sensitivity.
 
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MollyMc

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Thank you mountain mama. It is so helpful to talk to someone who understands, although I am equally sorry that you have been through it. It is utterly miserable. My close family must be sick to death of me talking about pain in my teeth!
I think your diagnostic criteria is helpful!
the tooth under my bridge (that is causing the most pain) is not at all sensitive to temperature, and I can brush it and eat on it. But it aches constantly, and often progressives to a deep burning pain. There is also occasional throbbing that really makes me panic.
It has been x-rayed to death!
I am always worried that I’ll end up in awful pain over Christmas. Are you taking medication for neuralgia? I am awaiting a max fax referral, and taking pregablin, but don’t feel it’s helped yet.
 
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MollyMc

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My dentist seems to think that the new bridge is the current cause of my pain- the false tooth is too high, and too much biting pressure is being transferred to the supporting tooth. It is so painful. It’s being adjusted on Tuesday but I’m afraid that the trauma will have caused irreversible damage
 
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MountainMama

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My dentist seems to think that the new bridge is the current cause of my pain- the false tooth is too high, and too much biting pressure is being transferred to the supporting tooth. It is so painful. It’s being adjusted on Tuesday but I’m afraid that the trauma will have caused irreversible damage
Hopefully the adjustment will fix it. I understand the fear of no treatment available over the holidays. I have been on edge the past two Christmas holidays worrying about something going wrong. I just had a tooth extracted yesterday, grateful I could get it done before Christmas but worried about complications over the holidays!
 
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MollyMc

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Thank you, and fingers crossed that you will heal quickly, without complications. Can I ask, do you grind/clench your teeth at night? Is this thought to be a factor in your issues? Particularly the cracked teeth?
 
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MountainMama

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Thank you, and fingers crossed that you will heal quickly, without complications. Can I ask, do you grind/clench your teeth at night? Is this thought to be a factor in your issues? Particularly the cracked teeth?
Yes! I have always been a clenched. I don’t grind, just clench. I never thought about it as a kid but I do remember waking up with my jaw clenched. I still do it, even with my nightguard. My new dentist thinks the cracked teeth are due to my habit of clenching catching up with me.
 
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MollyMc

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So the update today is that my bridge has completely come loose! It’s only been in for about three weeks. Will my dentist be able to re-cement it and adjust the bite, so that it doesn’t take quite so much force from my bruxism?
 
Gordon

Gordon

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Yes absolutely. They might need to send it to the lab to be re-prepared to cement back in though, unless they have the equipment in the surgery. The fitting surface of the bridge is specially treated, it's sort of sand blasted to roughen it to give a good key to the adhesive.
 
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TheTinyDancer

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So the update today is that my bridge has completely come loose! It’s only been in for about three weeks. Will my dentist be able to re-cement it and adjust the bite, so that it doesn’t take quite so much force from my bruxism?
Hi @MollyMc I've sent you a private message
 
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