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Dental and Oral Health (Adults)

New onset of pain

12/15/2008

Question:

I`ve had tooth aches before but never like this. My back molar which I have had a crown or cap placed on has a sharp shooting pain (6-7 out of 10, well localized) the odd part is it doesn`t hurt when I eat, when I have hot or cold fluids, or chew gum. It hurts when I walk or shake my head. I looked in the mirror and noticed a black outline around the crown and the gum and noticed that the gum above the tooth looks darker compared to it`s relative idea... I called the dentist to schedule an appointment but the only time he has open is two months from now. Any suggestions/ideas? :(

I`ve heard stories about tooth abscesses leading to septicemia and entering the brain so i`m freaking out (thank you to the prerequisites of med-school).

Answer:

More than likely, the black outline and the gum being darker is caused by metal under the porcelain. Those are perfectly normal. If this is a top tooth, you may have sinus issues. If not, it sounds like your tooth may be abscessed. If this dentist is the one who did the crown and it was done relatively recently, I would suggest just showing up at the office. He or she may not be able to see you right then, but I'm sure you will get in sooner than in two months.

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Response by:

Daniel Nathan Reed, DDS Daniel Nathan Reed, DDS
Clinical Associate Professor of Primary Care Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University