Friday night, I started having major pains in one of my molars. It’s ached for about 3 years now, because …well it’s a long story involving a rush job done by a dentist that expected me to come in the day before my wedding (yeah right) for a root canal and an improper bite that makes my whole jaw hurt. But I digress. This hurts more than an ache.
The thing is, in the past few years, knowing full well that I was one step away from a root canal, my ears have perked up whenever root canals were mentioned. I’ve listened while natural/wholistic friends discuss how root canals kill the tooth. I’ve gone on tangents when articles I’m reading have ads discussing how teeth can heal themselves, if you let them. I’ve studied doctor commentaries that usually argue that teeth need the root canals, but it’s usually a last resort.
Saturday, while I’m holding my jaw and whimpering a little, I researched in one big push. If there’s a way to prevent root canals, isn’t it worth looking into? I mean, even if it’s not a truth, does it really hurt to put it off a week? I mean, if the tooth is pretty much on the gallows, anyway, can’t we delay the sentence one week, just to see if it can be pardoned? From what I can tell, it should only take a week to decide if it’s going to work; Longer to heal entirely, no doubt, but a week to see results/ feel reduction in pain. I’ve dealt with pain, although I confess that I’m a major wimp; but I will take pain -the fear of root canals is stronger.
I’ve never had much luck with dentists. In fact I’ve only ever liked one dentist, up until the rush-job I mentioned above. Before that, I had one dentist pull a tooth just because it was growing too close to another one (now I’m missing a canine, and have a triangular gap in my bottom teeth), one who pretty much destroyed my mouth, one tooth at a time, and one who went to pull a tooth (root-canaled by the complete-destroying dentist) just to break my jaw along with it. I have temporary bone in my jaw from that. It also gives me a huge gap in the back of my mouth that can’t close because there’s no bone for the teeth to go to. At any rate, I feel my fear is justified.
1. Eat soft foods and try to be gentle, for a week. Avoid sugars and acids. Take acetaminophen and/or ibuprofen until the pain begins to be tolerable. It’s already getting better.
2. Oil-pulling. I’ve heard of this for a while, but swishing oil in my mouth for 15-20 minutes didn’t sound enjoyable. I’ve done it twice, now (pain makes things take on new light), and it’s not as bad as I thought, once the coconut oil is liquid, and if I don’t put too big of a spoonful in my mouth.
3. Remineralizing toothpaste (found recipe online consisting of calcium powder, baking soda, and coconut oil)
4. If it doesn’t work, go in to see a dentist in a week and just get a root canal. If it stops hurting, keep trying this for a month. If it seems to be improving even more, then try it until my teeth are in good shape, then go and get the dentist to try to fix my bite, so I can’t keep hurting myself by actually closing my jaw or grinding my teeth while I sleep.