I had some cavities filled. Most of them were small and there were no issues with those. But one cavity was big and deep. After the filling went in, I had a constant low level ache with occasional pain spikes, so I went back and had it re-done. That helped some, but I was still getting sharp pains when chewing (especially anything crunchy). So I went back again, and my dentist basically said that there was no remaining option outside of a root canal.
I originally thought that the problem may have been a mistake by the dentist on that original filling. That was part of it, as evidenced by the way things got somewhat better after the second attempt. But now I think the larger issue was that the cavity was just too deep for a filling in the first place. X-rays showed that the filling wasn't quite hitting the nerve, but that it was really close. Probably just close enough that some activity (like chewing crunchy stuff) pushed the filling into the nerve, and hurt like crazy.
The actual procedure was fairly uneventful. That local anesthetic that they swab onto/inject into your gums to numb the area works great. Couldn't feel a thing, even after watching ugly-looking needles and drills go by on their way to my mouth. Worst part of the whole process was when the assistant accidentally pulled on my lip with that little suction-tube thing.
I was expecting some pain after the anesthetic wore off, but surprisingly I've had almost none. It's been 24 hours, the numbing wore off hours ago, and I've had nothing more than a mild ache. Perhaps living with the constant ache and chewing pains for the last month-and-a-half got me used to it. Guess I didn't need to buy all that applesauce and oatmeal after all (not that it will go to waste).
|I was well prepared for any chewing problems. Unnecessary, as it turns out.|
Currently, I've got a temporary filling covering up the hole in my tooth. In another month or so, I get to go back to have a permanent filling put in, and a crown put on to cap the tooth. Until then, I was told I can mostly go on as normal; just be careful not to chew anything too tough/hard on that tooth, and don't eat really sticky stuff that might pull on that temporary filling. So no taffy in my immediate future, and I'll keep chewing on the other side of my mouth. Looking forward to getting this all finished up next month.