The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society - Fighting Blood Cancers
9 Replies Latest reply: Feb 25, 2012 1:08 PM by Happycat RSS

Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals

luvmybees24 Registered Users
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I know this is off topic but everyone on here is always so honest and comforting. I need to have a root canal tomorrow. No infection in the tooth, just a big filling that went bad. I'm so scared I am about 2 min. away from a full blown panic attack. I wish they did sedation for this sort of stuff. I'm more nervous for this than I was for my BMB!!!

 

Helpful stories, please!

Laura.

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    A_1derful_Wrld Registered Users
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    HI Laura,

    I've had two and they were honestly not so bad.  Lots of Novocaine is your friend and then it is just like a really long filling.  I think you'll be fine!!

    good luck!!!

    Lori

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    jjg Registered Users
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    Root canals (& other infections) were part of my induction into CML. I've had good and bad experiences. Apparently my bad experience was as bad as my dentist had ever seen and in the scheme of BMB it wasn't too bad. Once they get the nerve out you stop feeling pain. I think about this to feel good about them removing the nerve.

    One thing my dentist does is inject the gum with anesthetic, as for a normal filling but is happy to put more in the gum as she goes along (you only feel the first injection). She also seems to squirt the anesthetic down the tooth into where she is removing the nerve. The more anesthetic the better. This was for my bad experience. My good experience was just boring time in the chair. My bad experience involved me ignoring pain for months and a lot of infection where as my good experience was more like the situation you describe - not much infection.

    Good luck!!!

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    Happycat Registered Users
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    Oh, I've had plenty of experience with these, in all kinds of situations, with and without infection, irritated nerves, etc. what I have learned is that the bigger teeth with more roots require more novocaine. I'm not very sensitive to novocaine, so my dentist always has to use 2 shots at a minimum for me, just for a filling.  (I think I metabolize it quickly, too, it never lasts long.). For a molar, i usually need 4 shots. They might be able to start with 3, but guaranteed they will have to stop partway thru and numb me up again. (See, I have reason to suspect I metabolize it quickly.).  I just had my front tooth done, got away with 2 shots, but then had to get a third partway thru. .

     

    So, don't be shy about telling the dentist upfront if you need more novocaine. If the nerve is irritated (this can happen without an infection), you will need more novocaine. Irritated nerves are hard to calm down.   My dentist usually lightly taps the tooth before starting to see if I can feel anything before she starts.  Someone else mentioned a dentist dripping the novocaine directly in the hole. I've had that done, too, often because they cant get any more novocaine in my gums. It works, which is the most important thing.

     

    Not sure if others feel this, but when the novocaine begins to wear off mid-procedure, it kinda leaves in waves. I feel a sort of wave of feeling, like a pulse, that flashes over my lips, nose and chin. That's how I know I'll need more novocaine in about 2-5 min.

     

    Anyway, speak up early, ask your dentist to test the tooth to make sure it is good and numb before starting, and make noise if you begin to feel anything mid procedure.

     

    Traci

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    Happycat Registered Users
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    P.s.  the other thing that helps me with nerves is to recite the Lord's prayer in my head, or church hymns.  I find those more comforting and distracting than other songs. Other people actually listen to music with earphones to drown out the drill noise.

     

    Traci

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    Fas Registered Users
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    Hi Laura,

    Had one last year.  I agree with Traci and if you are at all uncomfortable during the procedure say something. 

     

    I am  big meditator, so I took myself to a relaxing place and it was over in no time.  The music being pumped into my ears also helped to counter the noise and made it easier to focus my thoughts elsewhere.  It was pretty a normal experience and the only thing different for me was that my oncologist wanted me to take a dose of antibiotic just prior to the procedure as a preventive. 

     

    Smooth sailing,

    Fran

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    luvmybees24 Registered Users
    Currently Being Moderated

    Thank you all! I went to the endodontist today and he can't fit me in until WEDNESDAY! However he is older, seems very experienced and kind and I trust him so I feel better now. My tooth isn't abscessed and I am on anti-biotics (amoxxilcillian) and he gave me some Vicodin. The pain has let up a bit and I'm down to 1 Vicodiin a day rather than 3 or 4 (Oy the constipation!!!). I told myself I'm not allowed to flip out until Tuesday night. lol.

  • Re: Off topic but maybe you can help. Root Canals
    rjmeistro Registered Users
    Currently Being Moderated

    Been there, done that.root canal that is.  Trust me, it is not painfull.  A good dentist will numb you enough that you will be pain free.  Even the numbing is numbed ( the injection).  The part I disliked was sitting there with my mouth open for a long time.  Bring a I-Pod or other listening device with those tiny ear plug style head phones and crank it up!  You'll be fine.  Let me know how it goes.  Oh.... seems infection is the biggest worry,  just so you know

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