My dentist won’t begin orthodontic treatment until all my teeth are healthy. She placed three white fillings on molar teeth, but one filling began to hurt within about two weeks. Three weeks ago, my dentist shaved down some of the filling. But I told my dentist that I still hear a cracking sound in my tooth when I bite down. My dentist examined the filling, removed it, and replaced it. She says that if my symptoms don’t improve that I will need a root canal. That was last week, but I feel a sharp pain in the tooth. Can I trust my dentist’s diagnosis, or will I need an extraction? I feel like it’s going to be three months before I can get Invisalign. Thank you. Ann from Brownsville
Dr. Reddy can’t diagnose the issue without an x-ray and examining your tooth. But based on your description, you might be experiencing one or more of these issues:
- Cracked tooth
- Traumatic occlusion (the way your upper and lower teeth fit together)
If you didn’t feel pain until weeks after your dentist did the first filling, either a crack or infection in the tooth is likely. Your dentist did well in using composite, especially with deep tooth decay. But we are skeptical about your dentist’s ability to resolve the issue.
You still feel sharp pain in the tooth. We recommend that you get a second opinion from a root canal specialist (endodontist). Root canal treatment is routine for an endodontist, and the procedure will be painless. Do not have your tooth extracted without seeing an endodontist first. It probably is not necessary to remove the tooth.
And without replacing an extracted tooth, other teeth will begin to shift. If you grind your teeth and night, that makes the issue worse.
During your consultation with the endodontist, explain your plans for orthodontic treatment. The endodontist will let you know when the tooth is healthy enough to withstand the pressure from Invisalign as it moves your teeth. Remember that the endodontist will need to examine and x-ray your tooth to tell if it is cracked and see the extent of decay or an infection. Afterward, you can decide if your current dentist is the right Invisalign provider for you.
This post is sponsored by Dr. Rekha Reddy, an Invisalign Platinum provider in Dallas, TX.