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Friday, November 19, 2010

Ugh. Dental Pain Sucks.

At the end of this long post is a question: Has this happened to anyone else before?

In brief, my mouth has been jinxed since I was in the womb. It is waaaaaaaaaaay too small to fit all of my teeth into. As a kid in grade school I was back and forth to the dentist for extractions on a regular basis. I'll never forget the time the dentist pulled five teeth all at once. That's right, five! (To console me, my mom got me a stuffed animal snake in the gift shop downstairs because I was a weird little girl who was obsessed with snakes, rats and bats for most of my childhood.) I still cringe when I drive by the building even though it happened a couple of decades ago. On the bright side I only ever had three wisdom teeth so I didn't have to have four pulled like everyone else.


Because of my too small mouth my teeth have always been nothing but trouble. Recently, my dentist suggested replacing a really large, old filling on my back molar with a crown to protect the tooth and nerve because the filling was starting to come apart. I said ok, so we started work on a tooth that was causing me no pain but was destined to.


After removing the filling we were just getting started...


I think this is what happened, the dentist ground down the tooth to prepare it for the crown.


With the new crown on I hoped for the best but I wasn't feeling any pain because of all of the novocaine.


Once the numbness wore off my tooth began to hurt. Man did it hurt. Even worse is that it's continued to hurt for the past two and a half weeks :(


It kind of feels like this. Like daggers painfully poking the tooth above and below the gum line in a constant rhythm, like to the beat of a really bad song.


Once the novocaine wore off the weirdness began. Not only did my tooth hurt, inside my nostril on the same side hurt too. It feels like it's super dry and searingly painful, almost like it's burned inside. Why? I have no idea. There is a possibility that the novocaine injection might have damaged a nerve that connects my tooth to the inside of my right nostril or two nerves are freaking out at the same time.

So here's what's really odd: If I press on the outside of my nose, the nostril stops hurting and..... So does the TOOTH! Well sometimes the tooth still hurts but only by like 10% of what it feels like without the finger to the nose. But I can't sit around 24/7 pushing on the outside of my nose with my finger. 

The worst part about the whole mess now is that I'm caught between a rock and a hard place: A root canal would stop the tooth from hurting but not necessarily the nostril. Root canals are icky, painful and expensive so I'd rather not have one if I don't really need it.


Instead I've been taking Advil. A lot of it. The tooth is gradually getting better. Two and a half weeks ago I was inhaling Advil 4-5 times per day. Now I'm only taking it 1-2 times per day so that's an improvement right?


Since this all began the easiest thing for me to eat is my favorite breakfast cereal: Brown Rice Grits. It's soft and warm and needs no chewing.


I've also consumed an unusually high number of Jamba Juice all fruit smoothies.


Mashed potatoes have been a good filler food...


One night I decided to try eating potato chips using only my front teeth to chew them. My husband thought it was hilarious. He said I looked and sounded like a squirrel. He thought it was so funny he told all of our friends at dinner a few nights later. Glad I was able to amuse him.

During this time period I've gone to a few business lunches, 2 dinners and a breakfast. I attended the Blissful Wishes Ball, a catering tasting and spoke on the SmugMug guest panel the other night. The whole time my tooth and nostril ached anywhere from a little to a LOT.


If nothing else this experience has taught me that I can act. Most people haven't realized I've been in constant pain unless I tell them.

Recently a few people have asked if I want to go have lunch or dinner with them. I'd love to but am holding back for now until my tooth and nostril are feeling better, which will hopefully be soon.

So my question is: Has this happened to anyone else before? Any advice to offer me? My dentist said he's never had this happen to anyone before but that it's entirely possible that I did suffer some type of nerve damage. I'm open to suggestions about how to relieve the pain. Two people have suggested acupuncture which I'm now considering. You can leave a comment in this post or send me a message if you have any ideas.

Thanks for any help!

4 comments:

  1. Maybe one of those nose clips that people wear to prevent snoring since you can't press the side of your nose with your finger all day :)

    Seriously though, that is awful! Have you considered going to a Ear, Nose & Throat physician to check if there is nerve damage in your nasal passage? He may have further insight than the dentist.

    I've honestly never heard of anyone having this before. I agree though, don't go for the root canal unless it's the only option.
    Hope you feel better soon!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Cindy,

    That's a good idea to get a Dr. involved. So far I've made three trips back to the dentist and had one phone consult. If I don't notice considerable improvement by Monday I'll give my Dr. a call.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Maybe one of those nose clips that people wear to prevent snoring since you can't press the side of your nose with your finger all day :)

    Seriously though, that is awful! Have you considered going to a Ear, Nose & Throat physician to check if there is nerve damage in your nasal passage? He may have further insight than the dentist.

    I've honestly never heard of anyone having this before. I agree though, don't go for the root canal unless it's the only option.
    Hope you feel better soon!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Very nice information you have gave about Root Canal Therapy. I like your post as tell everything clearly. Thanks for making such a cool post.

    ReplyDelete



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