My tooth hurts, again. I had it taken care of (or so I thought) about a month ago when I visited an emergency dentist. He decided to do a root canal. But I don’t feel like the pain ever let up. So, I decided to go back into the same emergency dentist because the pain was interrupting my daily life. Well, he did x-rays and examined the tooth. Honestly, the entire time I felt like he as humoring me. He basically told me I need to see a neurologist. Is he implying that the pain is in my head or something? Does he think I’m crazy? I feel like he was just trying to get me to leave. But my tooth still hurts!
-Jess in Maryland
Although your emergency dentist doesn’t sound like he had the most welcoming demeanor, he may be onto something. No, the pain isn’t inside your head and that’s not what he was implying by referring you to schedule an appointment with a neurologist.
If an x-ray and exam was performed and everything checked out, it is quite possible that your pain is being caused by nerve damage. This isn’t a common occurrence, but it does happen. This may explain why you feel like you have a toothache. If this is indeed the case, it would be in your best interest to schedule a neurological appointment.
Other issues that may be influencing your pain may be from your sinuses since the nerves are all intertwined in that area. A recent cold or even allergies, may also contribute to tooth pain. It is difficult to pinpoint precisely what is causing your discomfort. If indeed it turns out to be cold or sinus related, you will likely need a decongestant or possibly an antibiotic to clear up any infection. A general physician will be able to better diagnose this possibility.
All that to be said, the emergency dentist should have been able to provide you with additional information to steer you in the right direction. Sometimes root canals are not successful, but that should have been identifiable by an x-ray. It is also possible that the pain is from a nearby tooth that is referring pain to that same general area.
So, don’t settle if you are in pain. You are not crazy. It may be in your best interest to schedule a second opinion with a different dentist to see if they can continue to rule out any problems with the tooth and make proper recommendations on who you need to see next. Sometimes, tooth pain can be difficult to diagnose.
This post is sponsored by Cleveland dentist Hylan Dental Care.