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Molar sensitvity after re-do of a filling

User Level:
Patient
Posted by: ECT100pa  (4 years ago)
About 3 years ago, a dentist filled a break in my molar. No problem after that. A new dentist recommended, a re-do of the filling. It ended up with uneven bite and sensitivity when biting down (both when eating and simply closing my moth). I went back to the dentist and he reshaped the filling so it's more even, and the sensitivity seemed to have almost stopped for about 2 days, but it returned. It's now not sensitive when I'm closing my mouth (which is different than before reshaping the filling), but only when food or cold liquid touches the area where the filling was reshaped. Warm liquid seems to be ok. The dentist said that the previous filling was very close to the molar pulp so he thinks he irritated my molar nerve when re-doing the filling, and suggested that I keep an eye on sensitivity with the possibility of needing a root canal if the sensitivity gets worse.

Is there any self treatment I can do to reduce sensitivity other than eating soft? I've had the sensitivity for about 5 weeks. It only bothers me when food or cold liquid touches the area where the filling was reshaped.

From my description of my issue, I would like to get other professional opinion. Thank you.
User Level:
Dentist
About 3 years ago, a dentist filled a break in my molar. No problem after that. A new dentist recommended, a re-do of the filling. It ended up with uneven bite and sensitivity when biting down (both when eating and simply closing my moth). I went back to the dentist and he reshaped the filling so it's more even, and the sensitivity seemed to have almost stopped for about 2 days, but it returned. It's now not sensitive when I'm closing my mouth (which is different than before reshaping the filling), but only when food or cold liquid touches the area where the filling was reshaped. Warm liquid seems to be ok. The dentist said that the previous filling was very close to the molar pulp so he thinks he irritated my molar nerve when re-doing the filling, and suggested that I keep an eye on sensitivity with the possibility of needing a root canal if the sensitivity gets worse.

Is there any self treatment I can do to reduce sensitivity other than eating soft? I've had the sensitivity for about 5 weeks. It only bothers me when food or cold liquid touches the area where the filling was reshaped.

From my description of my issue, I would like to get other professional opinion. Thank you.


Let me guess. The filling was on a back tooth. It was a white plastic filling that leaks like crazy.

Either the filling is leaking, or the pulp is on the way out. Should have had an amalgam, which are self sealing over time. My best advice is to have it resealed under a rubber dam with a penetrating sealant. If that does not work, it is root canal time.

If your dentist does not do amalgams or gold inlays, it is time to change dentists.
Posted 4 years ago
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: ECT100pa  (4 years ago)
Dr Henry, thank you for responding. Yes, the filling was on the back molar. It is resin-based composite, so I think it is plastic. It doesn't look like it's leaking. When you say "have it resealed under a rubber dam with a penetrating sealant", does that require redoing the filling? (Which is going to be problem because insurance is not going to cover a redo.)

In case the molar pulp is on its way out, how safe is it to wait until January 2016? I think I can live with the sensitive molar on my one side and eat with other side as it doesn't bother me when I'm not eating/drinking.
I look forward to your response.
User Level:
Dentist
Dr Henry, thank you for responding. Yes, the filling was on the back molar. It is resin-based composite, so I think it is plastic. It doesn't look like it's leaking. When you say "have it resealed under a rubber dam with a penetrating sealant", does that require redoing the filling? (Which is going to be problem because insurance is not going to cover a redo.)

In case the molar pulp is on its way out, how safe is it to wait until January 2016? I think I can live with the sensitive molar on my one side and eat with other side as it doesn't bother me when I'm not eating/drinking.
I look forward to your response.


You can never see micro leakage. You can only verify it with dye perfusion tests under microscopy when the tooth is extracted.

You place a rubber dam (which should ALWAYS be used when doing plastic fillings!) to isolate the tooth in question. Re-etch it, then apply penetrating sealant. You may or may not have to be numbed for this. The improvement should be immediate. If not, root canal time. The dentist should do this for FREE as post-op problem solving.

There is a lot to be said for metal fillings in back teeth. They are easier to achieve a good contact. They last at least twice as long as plastic. They seldom break. Amalgam seals better with time. Metal is generally kinder to the pulp than the acids used in placing composite resins. Too late you learn the truth.
Posted 4 years ago
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: ECT100pa  (4 years ago)
Dr. Henry, I take it that resealing does not involve redoing the filling? Did I understand you right? With no redo of the filling, it makes it easier for me to seek further treatment.

My experience is that dentists tend to choose resin composite when filling. Is it because resin composite is more expensive than amalgams or metal? I was told that with gold filling, it will require two visits to complete the filling which is one of the reasons why resin composite was chosen.

When I'm not eating/drinking, the molar feels normal, but can sensitivity only when eating/drinking still be beginning of the dying pulp which is what I'm guessing?
User Level:
Dentist
Dr. Henry, I take it that resealing does not involve redoing the filling? Did I understand you right? With no redo of the filling, it makes it easier for me to seek further treatment.

My experience is that dentists tend to choose resin composite when filling. Is it because resin composite is more expensive than amalgams or metal? I was told that with gold filling, it will require two visits to complete the filling which is one of the reasons why resin composite was chosen.

When I'm not eating/drinking, the molar feels normal, but can sensitivity only when eating/drinking still be beginning of the dying pulp which is what I'm guessing?


As I said, it does not involve redoing the filling. It involves attempting to reseal it.

You are right in that gold inlays take two appointments, because they must be made by a lab.

It is unfortunate that so many young dentists consider amalgam fillings "outdated." Amalgams have the lowest cost per year of useful life of any filling material. I now have photos of my "amalgam crowns" functioning in patients after 22 years. An article in the Journal of Operative Dentistry featured photos of one that had made it 40 years.

Don't know why dentist capitulate on a good filling material just because it is not white. Do people fail to get hired or find dates with attractive girls because they have silver amalgam fillings in second molars? It is a mystery to me. I have back teeth with only gold and silver fillings and I found a beautiful woman and am gainfully employed.

My assistant and I do amalgam fillings every day. If anyone should be sick from the "dangers" of silver amalgam, it should be my assistant and I!
Posted 4 years ago
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