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Mouth pain / Throbbing


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#1 OCsunshine

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 03:51 PM

So I have had this deep throbbing in the left side of my mouth for about six months now. My first dentist said "let's just wait and see if it goes away" (brilliant idea- not!) and my new dentist thought it might be caused by a cavity in the back.

She filled it.
I still have pain.
She took the filling out and put a medicine/sedative in it.
I still have pain.

I am pretty convinced it's not that certain tooth, because the throbbing is like in a general area and it's not really that far back in my mouth. However, the dentist sent me to an endodontist.

I thought I would get a root canal this morning and all would be fine, but the endodontist did all kinds of tests and proclaimed that I had "Abnormal Results Across the Board" but could not find a specific tooth that seemed to be the problem!
He sent me to an oral surgeon who I saw this afternoon.

The surgeon found nothing wrong with my teeth or tissues or anything!
So he suggested I go back to my GP and also see a Neurologist and Pain Specialist.

This is all driving me crazy! I thought that this was just a tooth problem and a filling or a root canal would solve it, but once again (story of my life) I have been claimed a "Medical Mystery."

I am really upset b/c the throbbing is so severe, I take ibuprofen all through the day and take Tylenol PM every night just to make it through the night without waking up in severe pain. I told my doctors/dentists this, but they just shrug and send me to someone else!

So does ANYBODY have ANY ideas? I am desperate for ideas or information! Clues? ANYthing?

Thanks!

#2 futurehope

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 04:13 PM

I am baffled by the endodontist that saw abnormal results across the board and sent you on your way. I assume it's because he couldn't nail down one tooth to work on? What if you have an infection in your jaw bone from an abcessed tooth?
Did the xrays show any weird shadows?

Obviously, something is very wrong. I suppose the endo does not want you to pay for a root canal only to find out that the problem is still there. It is quite expensive.

Don't give up.

BTW. I just love seeing your posts and your name OCsunshine. I live in Maryland and it brings a smile to my face to think of OC every time I read your name.

#3 Eillyre

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 04:15 PM

I'm afraid I haven't the slightest idea about the oral pain. But I did want to comiserate on the continued "Medical mystery" -- it's so wearingly frustrating! :D

Hope you find an answer soon! :rolleyes:

Angela

#4 JaneEyre9

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 04:21 PM

I wanted to add my sympathy about the medical mystery label. I sure know what that feels like. I hope you can get some relief soon. Do you think it might be a damaged nerve? What kind of abnormal results did the doctor find?
I can't believe they can't find the source! The mouth is a pretty small place...they should be able to find something! So sorry you are going through this.
Kristen

#5 Dizzy Dame

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 04:22 PM

Dear Rachel,

Have you been diagnosed with fibro? and if so, could the mouth pain be related? That's about all I can think of, but there may be people on the site who have a better answer. Sorry to hear you're having a rough time.

- Lauren

#6 Poohbear

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 05:03 PM

Hi!

Still thinking on this one.
Can I ask a few questions to see if I can understand better and then I might have something more to add.

Is the pain there all the time or does it come and go a little?
When you say the left side of your mouth is it your jaw line, your cheek, your tonsils etc?
Does the pain increase or remain the same if you clench your teeth?
Do you have any headaches or sinus trouble or any other symptoms with this or is the only problem the pain?

One thing that popped in my mind was trigemminal nerve pain. Usually that type of pain is not constant though but brushing your teeth, touching your face, eating...things like that...will stimulate the nerve and cause pain.

Have you recently had any wisdom teeth or other teeth removed? I had a bone chip from having my wisdom teeth out that wasn't noticed right away. Eventually it got infected and then the source was obvious but until that I just had a persistent throb.

#7 Sophia3

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 05:11 PM

Did anybody see signs of tooth grinding (cracked teeth, lines inside jaws)

I have done this for years and the mouth splint made my TMJ pain worse...so I don't use it.. But I get "tooth aches" from grinding but not the severe pain you mention.

I only wanted to empathize and hope you get an ANSWER soon. Can they do nerve pain tests for the face like they do for the body. The EMG tests?

I can't help but wonder if somebody is over looking something. Do you use toothpaste for sensitive teeth? If not, try it...if so, make sure it isn't the type with WHITENER in it as that is terrible for your teeth and can make them sensitive. W/o toothpaste for sensitve teeth I AM uncomfortable.

My ache pain moves around...something I think its a lower tooth, sometimes an upper. It's a drag and a dull ache. So I hope you get an answer soon and keep us posted. I also clench my mouth during the day a lot from adrenalin overload.

I wish they made teeth pillows for the mouth guards and not all that hard stuff that tastes like poison...and no doubt outgasses in our mouths.

#8 OCsunshine

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 07:31 PM

Okay this is all great info.

First I will answer some questions (I appreciate y'all helping me out and trying to get to the bottom of this).

Yes I had x-rays done by the dentist and the endo. They all said they looked normal and nothing was wrong. The surgeon looked at the same x-rays and said it all seemed fine, too.

The pain isn't exactly constant, but it does hurt almost every day (maybe 6 out of 7 days). If I don't take Tylenol PM before bed, it will almost always wake me up at like 1 or 2am throbbing and I am frantically searching for ibuprofen in the dark. It is an INTENSE throb! But then I can wake up fine and maybe spend half the day before it starts throbbing again.

Where does it throb? It's not my jaw. Not my cheek area. It's like mostly down on the bottom of my teeth, it's the front area of my teeth and not the back or deep inside, know what I mean? Like the side of my teeth that touches my lip. It hurts down in the gum line I guess. But there really is no specific place. It radiates all around and sometimes I swear it aches from the top teeth and not the bottom!

Does it increase with clenched teeth? Not that I can tell. It doesn't hurt when I chew or bite or do anything like that. It hurts when my mouth is still and not eating. All of a sudden I am like WHOAH and I frantically search for pain killers to calm it down. :-/

Poohbear, I -DID- have my wisdom teeth out in December! All 4! You had a chipped bone?!? Whoah! It got infected and caused constant throbbing? That sounds really like what I am getting! But I saw my oral surgeon today and he didnt mention that as a possibility at all (he is a very well known, great surgeon with a great reputation).

So I just don't know!

OH, I was also asked about the "abnormal findings" of my endo. Well he did all of those tests... he tapped on my teeth (apparently if you need a root canal, the tapping will hurt on that tooth), I felt nothing bad at all. He did hot and cold sensitivity stuff, no problems at all. Then he did the metal rod test thingy... he held it onto ALL of my teeth on the left side and I felt NOTHING at all. He said the meter went ALL the WAY to the top and I had no reaction. He said that even 'normal people' with a healthy tooth can only handle going 1/3 the way up the meter and they have pain. Soo...? He said he can't believe that all my nerves are dead in all of those teeth, I mean I am only 24 and that would just be crazy!

So nobody knows. I do feel like something is being overlooked. I feel like I am being passed around and no one really wants to bother with it. But it HURTS me and it hurts almost ALL the time and is driving me crazy!!

Thanks for all of the interest! PLEASE keep giving me ideas or questions I could ask doctors or ANYthing! I am going to see my GP on Monday. I don't know what to tell him really... just explain my problem, but I am sure he'll be stumped, too.

:-(


One thing that popped in my mind was trigemminal nerve pain. Usually that type of pain is not constant though but brushing your teeth, touching your face, eating...things like that...will stimulate the nerve and cause pain.

Have you recently had any wisdom teeth or other teeth removed? I had a bone chip from having my wisdom teeth out that wasn't noticed right away. Eventually it got infected and then the source was obvious but until that I just had a persistent throb.

#9 Sunfish

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 07:57 PM

rachel -
i have absolutely nothing of any use to add, but just wanted to send you (((HUGS))). i can definitely understand the frustration of being tossed around between docs, no one having answers, etc...
i REALLY hope you get some answers &/or some relief soon...hopefully both.
hang in there,
:) melissa

#10 Poohbear

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 08:46 PM

ok. I'm really tired tonight and having trouble following so forgive me.
Have you had an xray of your sinuses? They could be the culprit especially if you think the pain may be coming from the top.

In regards to where the pain is located, I'm a little confused. Your first reply I took to me the pain was on the side but then your second post I interpreted as pain toward your front teeth. So, if it's your front teeth hurting I doubt that would be a bone chip issue. If it was you back or side teeth toward the back then bone chip could be a possibility but usually with a bone chip you will have pain while eating or clenching teeth.

I'm no Dr but my first guess since the dentists all agree it's not a bad tooth is either sinus or nerves. You may be young for messed up nerves but let's face it....POTS/NCS don't discriminate against youth so it could be a possibility. I would think a neurologist would be a good place to go next and hopefully they could order xrays to rule out sinus issue. It doesn't sound like TMJ pain.

The only other thing that kinda "strikes" me is that it sounds like you get relief from Tylenol. I could be totally wrong about this but I thought that if it's nerve pain that typically tylenol, advil etc don't work on that type of pain which is why they tend to prescribe low doses of anti-seizure or anti-depressant meds for nerve pain. My understanding of this is that because it's the brain misfiring to cause the nerve pain (vs. inflammation) then different drugs will calm the nerve.

Do the glands and lymph nodes around your neck, under you tongue seem normal and "flowing" like they should?

#11 morgan617

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 09:09 PM

Okay, so I had the same thing and it was driving me crazy, it could hurt clear into my ear sometimes. I went to my dentist and she said that people who clench a lot cause cranial nerve irritation that can hurt anywhere near the nerve. It's caused from the molars making constant contact. So I got this nifty little device called an NTI. Very non invasive and total bill 110 dollars. What a difference!!!! It takes a few days to get used to, but no more pain. It's a little bite thing that only covers the four top front teeth, but doesn't allow the molars to connect when you sleep. The only draw back is dry mouth for me, but the benefit far outweighs that stupid pain....morgan

#12 OCsunshine

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Posted 30 September 2005 - 04:03 PM

Morgan- Tell me more about the NTI. What does that even stand for? Where did you get one? How did you know that's what you needed.

Poohbear- Nope, no x-rays of the sinuses. I will ask my GP about that on Monday, though!

Sorry I confused you about where the pain is coming from. That is the MOST confusing part of this problem! It's like... it's not my front teeth, and it's not my back molars, it's like the middle of that section. Like halfway back in my mouth maybe. It usually hurts on the bottom row of teeth, like under the teeth. When I said the "front" I meant the front of the teeth out by the lips, not behind the teeth. Does that make sense? Sorry- I confuse myself sometimes. :-/

And yes, I absolutely get relief from Tylenol and Ibuprofen. So maybe it's not a nerve problem? Grrr. So frustrating!

I have been more aware of my mouth today and since so many people mentioned grinding and clenching, I am being extra- aware to keep my jaw relaxed and not clench my teeth. (I don't think I do that normally, but over the past 6 months or so I have been extra stressed b/c we were buying a house.) Maybe that aggrivated something? Hhmmm...

Thanks for all of the help. I have been writing down everyone's ideas and responses and will take them to my doctor on Monday.

Thanks, guys!!!!



ok. I'm really tired tonight and having trouble following so forgive me.
Have you had an xray of your sinuses? They could be the culprit especially if you think the pain may be coming from the top.

In regards to where the pain is located, I'm a little confused. Your first reply I took to me the pain was on the side but then your second post I interpreted as pain toward your front teeth. So, if it's your front teeth hurting I doubt that would be a bone chip issue. If it was you back or side teeth toward the back then bone chip could be a possibility but usually with a bone chip you will have pain while eating or clenching teeth.

I'm no Dr but my first guess since the dentists all agree it's not a bad tooth is either sinus or nerves.  You may be young for messed up nerves but let's face it....POTS/NCS don't discriminate against youth so it could be a possibility. I would think a neurologist would be a good place to go next and hopefully they could order xrays to rule out sinus issue. It doesn't sound like TMJ pain.

The only other thing that kinda "strikes" me is that it sounds like you get relief from Tylenol. I could be totally wrong about this but I thought that if it's nerve pain that typically tylenol, advil etc don't work on that type of pain which is why they tend to prescribe low doses of anti-seizure or anti-depressant meds for nerve pain. My understanding of this is that because it's the brain misfiring to cause the nerve pain (vs. inflammation) then different drugs will calm the nerve.

Do the glands and lymph nodes around your neck, under you tongue seem normal and "flowing" like they should?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



#13 DancingLight

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Posted 30 September 2005 - 04:18 PM

Rachel!

I love being a medical mystery too! :lol: he-he.

Just wanted to say hi...although I have not a clue about your current medical mystery...have you emailed your POTS doc? You could always do that if your GP still has no clue!

I want to know about the NTI too!

I have the old kind that cover all of my bottom teeth...is the NTI better? Just wondering...

Later alligator!

emily

#14 morgan617

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Posted 30 September 2005 - 08:38 PM

I have absolutely no idea what NTI stands for. It's like a miniature bite block. Very tiny. It puts just enough space between your molars, so that they can't meet and greet while you sleep. If I am having a lot of pain, I'll sometimes even wear it during the day. It's not like I run a social club or anything for anyone to see.

I went to my dentist and told her I wanted the offending tooth pulled as I was certain that was the problem. She said visually she couldn't see anything and the xrays didn't show anything. So she said that when we clench our teeth, whether on purpose or not, the molars in particular put pressure on some of our cranial nerves, causing irritation of the nerve, which is referred and feels like mouth or tooth pain. If you stop the clenching, you stop the irritation and of course the pain stops.

She just did a little mold of my top teeth, made this little hard plastic thingy and it pops onto my teeth at night when I go to bed. Like I said, it's very small, only goes on the top four teeth. It has also been approved by the FDA for use with migraines. So for those of you suffering from those, that can't take meds, it's worth a try. I don't get migraines, but I wear it every night and I sure know when I haven't...morgan

#15 futurehope

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Posted 30 September 2005 - 08:52 PM

Just to add my two cents worth. I was having tooth pain once, and I went to the dentist. In the course of talking with him, I mentioned that I had recently moved.
His eyes lit up and then he said that it is possible that the stress of the move had me clenching my teeth more (wihtout being aware of it) and that could be causing my pain. He told me to wait a few days and see. He was right. The pain dissipated and I think it was from the stress.

Obviously, I've had other problems in which a specific tooth had been identified, and in those situations I needed a root canal.