Root Canal Diaries

What a few days it’s been. From this day forward L and I will know it as “The Marathon of Pain”.

She had been having a little pain on one side of her face for a few days and went to an ENT doc thinking it was a sinus infection. He put her on an antibiotic and told her to see how it went.

Fri night:

The pain starts getting pretty bad, symptoms and as it gets later it keeps getting worse. We sit up until daylight thinking it will get better, glands but no. After watching her in pain for hours, I finally snap and announce that someone is going to fix her, and sooner rather than later. So begins the ballet of calls to answering services and callbacks. Since she’s pregnant she can’t take hardly anything. The Tylenol they had ok’d a few days before is just not doing it. They tell me to give her 800mg of Advil. Yowsah.

When the Advil doesn’t get the pain under control, the dr tells us to hit the ER at Rex for some pain meds and a CT scan to see what her sinuses look like. So off we go. They do the CT, give her an iv of antibiotics, and write her a prescription for Vicodin. The ENT dr. tells us that the CT shows a minor infection but not nearly enough to cause that much pain. We start suspecting a dental issue.


Home from the ER at noon. L sleeps some finally for the first time during the afternoon. Pain is manageable with the Vicodin. We both manage to get caught up on sleep that night as I still hadn’t slept at all.


Sara and I do some yard work while L lays around and tries to rest. By that night it’s getting bad again and the Vicodin is not keeping it under control. Not planning on repeating the last time, I call the dr and he tells us to go to the ER, he can’t call in anything stronger. So back we go to Rex. The ER doc thinks it’s a dental issue as well, writes her a prescription for Percocet.

After a middle of the night drug store run, we get home about 3am or so. The Percocet whips the pain into submission, and she’s able to get some rest.


I start dealing with dentists first thing. We start with ours, who refers us straight to an endodontist because they think she will probably need a root canal. We get her an appt at 4:45, they are nice enough to see her after hours.

A few xrays later, she’s numbed up, flat out and they are doing a root canal. She has no problems at all and it takes an hour or so. It’s done in 2 appts so they do about 85%, she’ll have to go back to finish in a couple weeks, then back to the regular dentist for a crown.

To add insult to injury, this is the first year we opted out of comprehensive dental insurance, so this ordeal is going to cost us.


She’s almost as good as new. Not enough pain to even bother with Tylenol. Sweet.


It’s unbelievable how much being pregnant complicated the situation. We had to get approval from her OB for everything, every med she took, dental xray, the CT scan. We were nervous about it all, and have an OB appt Tuesday to check on the baby to reassure ourselves.

We’ve really been impressed with her doctors, the dentists and the people at Rex. They were great overall…responsive, nice, and her ENT and the endodontist both have called to check on her since. Nice people.

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