My root canal this morning went pretty well. If you want the enthralling details, I present to you a run-down of what they did, along with relative pain rankings, “N” being no pain, and a scale of “!” ( for a bit of wincing pain ) to “!!!!!” ( for excruciating, unbearable pain).

  1. Two shots of novocaine to my gums. !
  2. Rubber dam put around the molar. N
  3. Drilling of the tooth to remove temporary filling and gain access to pulp. !!
  4. Another shot of novocaine to my palate, since the previous step caused a bit more pain. !
  5. Scraping and filing of the root canals with dental files to remove the pulp (this scraping and filing is the actual ‘meat’ of the root canal treatment, as it were). N
  6. X-Rays to determine the extent to which the canals need to be cleaned (I have very long roots, according to all of the dentists I’ve had). N
  7. More scraping of the root canals. N
  8. More X-Rays. N
  9. More scraping. N
  10. One last X-Ray. N
  11. A bit more scraping. N
  12. Root canals filled with inert, rubber-like material. N
  13. Root access hole filled with temporary cement. N

So all in all, it really wasn’t too awful. The worst part, frankly, is sitting prone in a chair for an hour and a half, with one side of your jaw cranked wide open. It was quite a relief to be able to close my mouth after the appointment was over. The dentist gave me a prescription for ammoxicilin to combat any leftover bacteria from the root canal, and for vicodin in case the pain is unbearable. At this point, however, I’ve taken only a single Advil at 10:30 in the morning, and as of right now I don’t feel any pain at all. I suppose that makes sense, seeing as how they removed the nerves from my tooth. I doubt that I’ll need the vicodin, but it’s there just in case.

I was considering having my Wisdom Teeth looked at, since those are so commonly removed. I really do hope the dentist tells me that it will not be necessary, or at least just a couple and not all of them. I’m happy to take care of my dental health, but it was quite an uncomfortable experience that I would rather not have to deal with again. In the meantime unfortunately, I do have to go back to get some minor work done before and I can be done with going to the dentist for a little while.

I have an appointment on Tuesday for another (small) cavity to be filled, and they’re going to do the crown and the post for my root canal in the same appointment. Finally, I will have one last appointment in 2-3 weeks to put the final cementing on my crown. Then all of that trial will be over, and hopefully I won’t ever have to go through this again. *sigh*

Read related: Implants from Frisco Dental Associates.

10 thoughts on “Rooted

  1. Peter

    As I’ve said before, the worst thing was the cost. The second worst thing was just sitting in the chair with my mouth open for such a long time. Other than that, it was no big deal.

  2. Peter

    Actually, I’m thinking about asking my dentist if I can have the digitized copies of my X-Rays. They take them on film and then scan them in to the computer so that they can zoom in and mark them up and such. They would probably think I was a bit weird, but then, they’d be right. 🙂 After all, I did pay for those X-Rays, and they are of my teeth…

  3. jennifair

    Wow. Thanks for the lowdown on what is known as a notoriously nasty procedure. I’m scared to death of the one I have to schedule – all four wisdom teeth need to leave my mouth. (and I should have done it over the summer. oops.)
    …wish I had some floss and a toothbrush here at work…. hmmm…. 🙂

  4. Peter

    It’s interesting that you mention wisdom teeth, Jenn, because they are partially to blame for my root canal. All of my wisdom teeth are still under the gums, and for the most part they are okay and not really going anywhere. But one of them is turned sideways and is partially impacted on a molar. This molar in turn has tilted sideways a bit, and there is a larger than normal space in between it and the other tooth next to it. So lots of food and junk gets caught up there, and apparently I wasn’t vigilant enough, and the tooth decayed too far. Hence the root canal. Having my wisdom teeth extracted is a procedure I fear even more, because they’re all below the gums… I’m about at the point where they should be stopped from moving any more, so hopefully I’ll never need to mess with them… :-/

  5. Angela

    Peter, I’m so glad to hear the pain wasn’t too bad! You really might want to have those wisdom teeth looked into though. I had all four done at once when I was in high school (some were below the gums), and I didn’t find it to be that bad. They put me out for the procedure, and I remember taking tylenol for a few days afterward, but that was it. If you can live through a root canal, you can live through that!

  6. Peter

    My dentist has said that beyond 25, wisdom tooth extraction is not an easy thing… so unless it’s causing some sort of imminent dangers, it’s easier to just let them be. If I’d had them taken out in high school, it would have been no big deal. But my dentist back then said he didn’t see any need for me to have them pulled. So I never did.

  7. Amy

    Geez, I had more pain than that just having 3 very small fillings put in a few weeks ago. And that after the maximum amount of anesthesia for my height and weight. You are lucky!


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