Torture of the Endodontic File!

C

Carlotta

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Joined
Apr 11, 2013
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4
Hello everyone. Today my dentist opened up my tooth that had already undergone a root canal because not long after having a zirconia crown fitted, my gum flared up along the palate side with puss. She didn't give me any anesthetic because the area was infected and swollen.

What I would like to know is, why it hurt me when she pushed those "torturous pin-like" endodontic files up the canal. When she reached a particular point I would feel a sharp pain and flinch back. And then she kept doing it even though I started trembling with fear and had tears rolling down my cheeks. I whimpered but she just wanted to get on with it. Why did I feel pain if there is no nerve in the tooth?

I also remember that when I originally had the root canal done (in two visits), on the first visit there was no pain (as I had been given anaesthetic - which I also had a scary reaction to but that's a whole other story that I will leave for another day) but on the 2nd visit, which was to close up the canal, she said I wouldn't need anaesthetic because the nerve had akready been taken out - but every time she poked those files right up as far as they could go - I could feel pain. I could feel everything. Has this happened to anyone else?

I have to go back agian to close the canal that she reopend but I am terrified - I would literally rather be given lashes that have that file anywhere near my face again - seriously. I am a very anxious person and this just makes everything worse! Please help me....:cry:
 
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vicki

vicki

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Hi Carlotta :welcome:

Sorry to hear about your bad experiences; I know from my own experience, just how painful it can be if your tooth isn't properly numb during root canal treatment :(. As it happens, I'm in the middle of root canal treatment on a few teeth myself, so hopefully the following should be of some help :).

What I would like to know is, why it hurt me when she pushed those "torturous pin-like" endodontic files up the canal. When she reached a particular point I would feel a sharp pain and flinch back. And then she kept doing it even though I started trembling with fear and had tears rolling down my cheeks. I whimpered but she just wanted to get on with it. Why did I feel pain if there is no nerve in the tooth?

I seem to experience real problems with not being numb during dental treatment and I know that partly it's probably down to my anxiety (which is why I'm now trying Diazepam for the root canal appointments) but also, sometimes if the tooth is either infected and/or inflamed, then it can be very difficult for them to get your tooth fully numb. If you have infection present, then your dentist will usually prescribe some antibiotics to treat the infection and give the swelling chance to go away, before starting treatment.

However, from what you've said, if your dentist wouldn't stop even though you were in obvious pain; then they sound like someone that I definitely wouldn't want touching me! Is there any way that you could perhaps see someone else?

I also remember that when I originally had the root canal done (in two visits), on the first visit there was no pain (as I had been given anaesthetic - which I also had a scary reaction to but that's a whole other story that I will leave for another day) but on the 2nd visit, which was to close up the canal, she said I wouldn't need anaesthetic because the nerve had akready been taken out - but every time she poked those files right up as far as they could go - I could feel pain. I could feel everything. Has this happened to anyone else?

Some dentists do root canals in one appointment and some prefer to do it in two, where the first appointment is to clean out the canals and then you go back for a second appointment to fill and seal the canals, before the permanent filling or crown is placed later on when the tooth has settled down. In theory (which is a wonderful thing!! :rolleyes:), once you've had the canals cleaned out at the first appointment, you shouldn't be able to feel anything at the second appointment because nerve has been removed from your tooth and I think that's why some dentists say that you won't need the local anaesthetic for this second appointment. However, if they don't routinely use local anaesthetic for the second appointment, there's nothing wrong with asking to be numb. If you do start feeling pain and they don't do anything about it, then that's not a great sign at all really. You need to be able to trust your dentist and part of that means knowing that they will do everything they can to make your treatment as comfortable and pain free as possible.

It sounds as though (but don't take my word for it - I'm no expert...) maybe one or more canals in your tooth weren't completely cleaned out the first time you had root canal treatment and so there was still some 'live' tissue in there. This happened to me with my first root canal (which was a quick 50 minute rush job on the NHS :o). The pain never really went away and so the dentist decided to try and re-do the root canal (which was another NHS rush job and he didn't want to be bothered with local anaesthetic even when I felt pain) as he said that he hadn't been able to get right to the end of one of the canals. When I went for the appointment, I didn't feel anything until he touched the spot where there was still nerve material left in my tooth and it was extremely painful.

Since I changed dentists, things have been a lot better - for one thing, they don't ration the local anaesthetic and they do everything possible to make sure that I'm comfortable and pain free :).

I have to go back agian to close the canal that she reopend but I am terrified - I would literally rather be given lashes that have that file anywhere near my face again - seriously. I am a very anxious person and this just makes everything worse! Please help me....:cry:

I'm not surprised that you're terrified; I would be. When done properly and with someone who is doing their best to make sure that you are comfortable, root canal treatment shouldn't be painful.

Is there any way that you could see another dentist - maybe at the same practice or perhaps somewhere else? If it's definitely swollen and infected, then it sounds as though you need some antibiotics first to reduce the infection and swelling (which then usually makes it easier to get things numb), before the treatment is completed (but again, I'm not an expert :)).

I don't know whereabouts you are, but if you're in the UK, then you could try phoning NHS Direct and getting an emergency 'out of hours' appointment over the weekend. The appointment would probably be at a local NHS PCT clinic where they will at least be able to look at your tooth and prescribe some antibiotics if necessary.

I hope you start to feel better soon :there-there:.
 
carole

carole

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Hi :welcome: to the forum.

I would not see this dentist again. You ARE feeling pain and the dentist knows this but doesn't care. I would do what vicki has suggested and ask to see someone else if possible at the practice you attend. If they have a practice manager which most do ask to have a word with her/him and see if they can help you.

I have an infection under a rct'd tooth and am having it re treated by a specialist, it is a specialist job and is very time consuming, it takes hours to re do a rct'd tooth. The hours are spread out over multiple appointments. The reason you are feeling pain is because the infection causes the pain which feels like it is the tooth. It is not the tooth but there is pain if you are not numbed, even though there is no nerve. My dentist, that is re doing the tooth numbs me because I am told my comfort is the most important thing to him, also the tooth might be dead but when they put the dental dam on it can be a bit painful on the gum.

I am also very nervous about seeing the dentist, but if they make sure you feel comfortable and are properly numbed it makes it so much easier to deal with.

Your dentist should not have carried on with you in obvious distress, you have to consent to treatment being given and if you can't cope with it and ask them to stop, they have to. They can stop at any point and make the tooth comfortable until things have had a chance to calm down, when they can try later.

There may also be some root left in from when the rct was done as vicki as mentioned and an x ray should help them to see this.

Let us know how you get on. Good luck :clover::clover::clover:
 
C

Carlotta

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Apr 11, 2013
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Thank you everyone for your kind words and support. This was my first time using this forum and it has been helpful. I will let you know how I get on. 2 days ago, I called my dentist and aksed her if it would be possible to postpone the appointment should the infection still be present as I really would like to avoid havnig her work on me without anaesthetic. I am also scared to death of that due to a bad reaction I had but having her work without it is just intollerable.

Thanks again. you are all so nice.
 

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