After a routine dental exam/cleaning last December, my dentist discovered cracks in my onlays on left side upper and lower molars via x-ray. He suggested crowns as the onlays covered a large area of both teeth. I finally made an appointment in April to have the crowns put on both teeth. The dentist performed the crown prep, took molds of teeth, and placed temporaries on both teeth. A few days later I developed very red, sore gums around the temporary crowns and had a 101 fever. I called the dentist and he requested that I see him that afternoon to examine the teeth. He saw that I was very infected and wanted to remove the temporaries and clean out the teeth and redo the crowns. He sent me home with a prescription for antibiotics. He was going out of town in the next few days and if I wasn’t getting better after a few days, he will have another dentist on-call for me to follow up with. I wasn’t getting better, so I communicated with the on-call dentist. After a series of back and forth emails and phone calls early the next morning, my dentist was able to get me into a periodontist as my infection was in the gums, not the tooth itself. I went in to see the periodontist who took x-rays and examined the gums. He said that my gums were just traumatized and needed time to heal. I should give it a few more days for the antibiotics to take effect. I started to feel better and three weeks later went in to get my permanent crowns put on. The dentist numbed just my upper mouth to put the permanent crown on my upper molar, but didn’t numb my lower mouth as I requested not to be numbed there as I wanted to check the bite so I didn’t have to make another trip back to get adjusted. He filed down a small section on the lower molar. Once the numbness from the upper began to wear off, I noticed it felt a little wide (not high, just felt like it was slanted inward). I called the dentist the next morning and he said to give it a few days. I was scheduled for a cleaning a few weeks after this appointment, so I said I would wait until then for everything to calm down. About a week after the permanent crowns were put on, I noticed that while chewing, the left side of my chin would feel tingling along with some radiating pain. The pain felt like it went up my jaw near my ear. The pain would be intermittent, but the tingling would happen even if I moved my tongue. When I went in for my cleaning (and also had one small filling redone in one of my front teeth) on Friday, May 29, I mentioned to the hygienist and the dentist that I felt this pain and tingling in my chin when I chew or moved my mouth or tongue a certain way. The dentist wanted to review my x-rays again to see if anything was pressing on my nerve. He couldn’t see anything. He then thought my crown may be a bit high, but I said that my bite felt fine. He proceeded to drill a part of the lower crown down anyway to see if that may help with the pain and tingling in the chin. I also mentioned that I had a lower mouthguard that should be checked to see if it fit over the crowns. He told me to bring it in the following Monday afternoon, June 1. Over the weekend, I noticed that my bite seemed even more off. Now it seemed as if my right side was higher than my left side. I also didn’t have any relief from the chin tingling and pain. And, actually ate a salad on Sunday and felt a really sharp pain shooting to my chin when biting down. Additionally, I felt a sharp edge on my lower crown where he filed it down when I rubbed my tongue against it. I went to the dentist on Monday, June 1 with my mouthguard and to discuss what was happening in my mouth. He said he could fix the sharp edge and polished off the crown. He placed articulation paper on left side only to check the bite and said the teeth are barely touching. I asked if the right side could be higher than the left and he said it should be balanced now without checking the right side with articulation paper. He then checked my mouthguard and it fit correctly. I asked what I should do about the jaw pain and tingling and he said he didn’t know what it could be. He said to wear my mouthguard for one week and to follow up with him again on Monday, June 8. As of now (Thursday, June 4) I’m not feeling any relief as the pain/tingling in chin is still there as well as bite still feels off. I don't know where to turn. How should I proceed to solve these problems?

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  • Dr.Ritz

    Dr.Ritz 08 - June - 2015, at 20:53 PM

  • It looks like as if your tooth is infected as they are not root canal treated before putting the crowns. Ideally before putting crowns, that too in the teeth having onlays, should be root canal treated before crowns are put. This tingling sensation and referred pain to the ear is an indication of infected tooth. It can be due to traumatic occlusion i.e. high occlusion but as you have mentioned and occulsion is already checked, so it can be the infection. So discuss with your dentist and final opinion  can be given only after clinical examination, proper case history and seeing the xrays, pano etc. For more info on Root Canal treatment, you can check this link in our website....

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