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28 weeks and a ROOT CANAL??!

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Ok mamas,
I need some help...I chipped off part of one of my molars and went to the dentist who said...root canal. I would love to wait until I'm not pg anymore but dentist says not an option. And it hurts.
So help! Any experience from anyone here? Anyone had any dental work while pg? Any ideas on pain management afterwards?
Thank you mamas. I'm freaking out a little.
Any anything would be greatly appreciated...

post #2 of 16
having had both a root canal and a root fracture... DO NOT mess with not doing dental work. I cant iamgine what sort of long term pain meds you'd have to be on to not have a root canal done while pregnant. It's not usually something you can put off without making things much worse.

I dont know which meds in the root canal and which meds after are approved for pregnancy. I was nursing a toddler during the time I had a root canal and later, a root fracture/abscess that required me to be put under general anesthesia and to take Vicodin for the pain afterward. In fact, I was in so much pain with the root fracture and extraction that I was taking 3 extra strength tylenol between Vicodin doses. My toddler seemed unaffected, but this IS a toddler, and not a pregnancy.

I would read up on anesthesia safety recommendations, and pain management recommendations, and get it done. But that's just me, with the pain of dental work fresh in my mind!
post #3 of 16
i did a huge amount of research on this when i was pg last time and miscarried at 11 weeks. the root canal was scheduled for the next week

it is safest in your second trimester so the sooner you can get it done the better. it is better than risking infection. the stuff to freeze you is has been used countless times on pregnant woman and seems to be safe. pain control afterwards, hmm, i forget about that part but i think tylenol was the only option. i think i used it b/c i was afraid of motrin but maybe i did use motrin. the pain didnt last that long i dont think.

maybe some others will chime in. i know i checked it out and freaked out and checked with my dr and midwife and we all agreed the best thing to do was get it done in my second trimester. do you have a mw/dr you can get some reassurance from??
post #4 of 16
I had a root canal several years ago, when I wasn't pregnant. But, I never had it crowned, because I didn't have the money.

I cracked that tooth a week and a half ago, and had to have it extracted. So, I was given novocain, and had to take extra strength Tylenol to get through the next few days. I even resorted to a T3 with codeine two nights running. I also asked about it here, and the consensus was that the local anesthetic isn't something you'd request during pregnancy (eg. cosmetic dental work), but isn't likely to cause problems. I think the amount of anesthetic used for a root canal is similar to the extraction, so I'd say you're okay to have it done.

I really wouldn't put it off. Oh...and don't be surprised if your baby doesn't move while the dentist is drilling. I was 33 weeks when I had the tooth pulled, and baby was kicking like crazy...except when the drill was running.
post #5 of 16
The abcess that can occur from the broken tooth will be much worse for the baby than the lidocaine they will give you for the procedure. You really want to avoid that kind of infection while pregnant. You can NOT have laughing gas but any good dentist should tell you that. Nitrous oxide ( laughing gas) can cause misscarriage. I would have the root canal done and if time get the crown also. ( I was a dentaly hygienist of 16yrs now sahm) I have seen more than one mom chip or crack a tooth while in labor. It is amazing how much we grit our teeth when we push!
post #6 of 16
I had dental work at 33 weeks with no problem.

HOwever, dentists have told me that it can start up preterm labor, so be careful...also there is mercury in those fillings, so you do not want that in your system for the baby to soak up...
post #7 of 16
I had a RC at 28w in Jan. It was fine.
post #8 of 16
Sorry, I only had 1 hand before I had my RC in January, when I was about 28w. I had to get a note from the midwife saying it was okay. They used 2 lead aprons on me, including 2 thyroid shields when doing the x-rays (necessary for the proceedure). Honestly, the worst part was the HORRIBLE pain I was in for weeks before the RC. The proceedure itself was long (about 2.5 hours) and my jaw hurt after from being open so long. But, I was glad to not be in pain anymore from the tooth.
Good luck!
post #9 of 16
Definitely get the root canal - it will be fine. Tylenol is safe for afterward, though it really should not hurt afterward because the nerve in that tooth will be removed. The procedure itself should not be painful - you will have lidocaine (novocaine) for it.

Also, dentists don't use amalgam (mercury) fillings for root canals. They fill your tooth with stuff called gutta percha, and then they put a tooth-colored crown (cap) on the tooth.

Way better to do this now. There is some research showing that gum disease (another type of infection) is associated with premature birth and low birthweight....not saying you have gum disease, just that the health of your mouth affects your whole body.
post #10 of 16
I just wanted to let you know that there has been a connection made between women who have dental work done while pregnant and those children being autistic. I have a friend whose daughter is autistic and the three things that a mother could do during pregnancy to increase her risk of an autistic child were getting the flu shot, getting the rhogam shot and having dental work done. I will try to find the source for you. I am not trying to scare, but I want to make sure you are making an informed decision.
post #11 of 16
Originally Posted by hollyhobbie
i did a huge amount of research on this when i was pg last time and miscarried at 11 weeks. the root canal was scheduled for the next week
I had a miscarriage at 11 weeks too, several weeks after having had a root canal. I had the root canal scheduled and we had started TTC meaning we had sex once, and I didn't think I'd get pregnant so quickly. When I was having the root canal, I had just gotten a positive pregnancy test. I had thought about putting it off, but then I had read that dental problems were connected to a higher rate of m/c, so I thought I should go ahead with it. Then I had a miscarriage at 11 weeks, but the pregnancy had stopped developing sometime before that and I just didn't know it. I have no idea if my infection and rc caused the miscarriage, but I've always wondered.
post #12 of 16
I think you should get the work done. When I was 36 weeks pg, a large filling fell out of a molar. It hurt to eat, and I was afraid it would get worse or infected. So I got it fixed. And you don't want to spend the rest of your pg in pain.

Take care of yourself.
post #13 of 16
I can sympathize. I had to have my wisdom tooth pulled around 15 weeks and now just yesterday I had the 2nd part of a root canal done. We're gonna wait until after the baby is born to go ahead and put a crown on the tooth. Luckily, the root canals don't hurt afterward, so I found that I don't need any pain relief. I figure that getting a little novocaine versus having an infection is probably better for both me and the baby. Plus, I feel like in the third trimester (I'm 33/34 weeks) babes has done all the major developing so no harm will be done.
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you all so much!!
So I'm going to have it done in the morning. I'm hoping to get the crown done at the same time so that I can just be done with this whole mess! All of your information and experiences were so wonderful. Thank you all so much! I feel like I am making an informed decision, and the right one for me and the baby...
Thanks again.
post #15 of 16
Gossamer - I haven't seen that study, but my best guess is that they were looking at dental work that involved amalgam fillings, because of the possible autism/mercury link. Root canal treatment doesn't involve amalgam fillings, so that's not an issue here.
post #16 of 16
ALthough a root canal itself doesn't involve amalgam fillings, the teeth around the root canal might and any disturbance to the teeth or gums could increase the leaching of mercury into the system. Who knows? Everyone has to make the decision that is right for them.
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