I Survived

Yesterday was my root canal.  It went as well as I could have hoped, but it almost didn't happen at all!

When I arrived at the dentist's office yesterday I was literally shaking and had cold sweats.  I explained the intense pain that I was feeling and how the pain was most intense in three of my bottom and not the top teeth (the one that was supposed to be bad) at all.  In order to confirm that the top tooth was causing the pain in the bottom teeth, he proceeded to put a cotton swab with some gel that was really super cold on my teeth, starting with the top teeth.  The tooth was was "supposed" to be the problem tooth and all of the others around it didn't react negatively to the cold.  But as soon as he put the cold on the bottom tooth that I had been experiencing the most pain from, I nearly jumped out of my skin.

Cue more cold sweating.  I felt like I was dripping with sweat and yet shivering at the same time.  I have never experienced this before and it was truly strange.

Anyway, at this point I was even more terrified than before.  What if he did a root canal on the top tooth but then that didn't solve the problem?  What if I had to have a second root canal on the bottom tooth?  I couldn't even fathom it and almost decided to walk away.

He decided to try one last thing - he gave me a concentrated shot of Novocaine in the top tooth, and surmised that if it was the top tooth causing the pain then all of the pain would go away, including that on the bottom teeth.  It did but I still wasn't totally convinced, so I told him to put more of the cold stuff on the bottom tooth that had caused me to jump the first time.  He did, and I didn't jump.  So I gave the go-ahead.

In general it was one of the more comfortable root canals that I have had.  I didn't cry (although I almost did during the cold test mentioned above) and there was only a small bit of pain.  Some would argue that root canals should be pain free if you're properly numbed up, but for me that has never been the case, so "some pain" is much better than "I'm going to die" pain.  The Novocaine started to wear off after about an hour and I would rate the pain as a 5 on a scale of 1 to 10.  But considering that I experienced off-the-chart pain during other root canals, it was tolerable.

Did I mention how I was sweating?  My hands were freezing - literally ice cold.  And yet when I got up out of that chair my legs and back were so sweaty that I was disgusted with myself.  I don't sweat that much during my most intense workouts!!!  I feel like there is NO WAY that I didn't have sweat that soaked through my pants.  Fortunately if there were such marks, everyone was nice enough to pretend that there weren't.  When I went outside the wetness and the cold made me feel even more freezing.  Is sweating a normal response to anxiety? Good god it was a strange experience for me and I hope it never happens again. I  hate sweating.

So for now the drama is over.  I say "for now" because I only have a temporary filling in this tooth and usually you need to get a crown on a root canaled tooth within two weeks or so.  But my insurance is completely maxed out - in fact I'll probably end up paying a bit out of pocket for this - and I want to wait until January when my insurance renews.  That's stretching it a little, but I'm hoping that if I'm careful and avoid things like caramel and taffy that I can keep this temporary filling in for the next two months (instead of two weeks) and take care of the crown then.

So, is the tooth drama over? God, I hope so.  But if it isn't, I'm sure you will all be among the first to hear.


Corinne said...

Oh my goodness you poor thing! I hope that you are able to stretch out that temporary crown until January! And in the meantime I hope you find some much needed relief from all that pain! :(

Blasé said...

Root Canals aren't bad like they used to be.

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