Chronic pain after fillings… twice! : Dentistry


So I (29, F) have had 3 fillings in my life. The first when I was 16 was a metal filling (excuse my laymen’s term here and probably for the rest of the post). I have had no problems with it whatsoever.

In January 2018 I had another filling completed by a new dentist. This is, what I think is called, a composite filling. It’s white, not metal. It’s in a molar on my top left side. I had no pain before the filling or during the filling. After the filling I noticed sharp pain (no sensitivity to temperature) when I would bite on something hard with that tooth. So about two weeks later I went back to the dentist who said I might have sprained tooth syndrome. She adjusted the filling and advised me not to chew on that side of my mouth for a week. I followed the directions, but the pain remained. I went back for 2 additional adjustments (during which I bite/chew on a piece of paper and the dentist files the filling). The pain remains. The dentist told me that the tooth probably needs a cap for the pain to go away. The pain only happens when I’m chewing something hard (nachos, seeds, etc). So I decided I could just chew hard things on the right side of my mouth and save my money.

So, April of 2019, I get another composite filling by the same dentist. This one in a molar on the bottom left side of my mouth. And the EXACT same thing has happened. No pain before the filling. No pain during the filling. That night after the filling I bite down on something hard, and sharp, shooting pain! This time the pain was on the bottom and slightly more forward in my mouth differing in location from the pain from the previous filling. I go back, they adjust the filling, tell me not to chew on that side for a week, I follow the directions, but the pain remains.

So now, I’m continuing avoiding chewing hard foods on the left side of my mouth for forever it seems. I’m afraid at one point I’m going to need a filling on the right side.

Does anyone know why this keeps happening? I figured, worst case scenario, maybe she messed up my filling. I was willing to forgive and forget, but twice?! This dentist has great reviews and I know other people that go there who have never had a problem. Is it my teeth? Do I need to find a new dentist? Will the pain go away without a cap?

Other maybe relevant background info is that I had/have TMJ. At one point I could only open my jaw maybe half an inch without pain. I had a plastic mouth guard made by a specialist that I wore for 6 months about 9 years ago, and I haven’t had any pain or problems since then.

Thanks for reading this long post. Any advice is appreciated!


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